Fairs and Festivals
of almost all the religions are celebrated in U.P. The composite culture of the
State is famous all over India. Various communities celebrate as many as 40
festivals with gaity and complete communal harmony. Sheetla Ashtami, Raksha
Bandhan, Vaishakhi Purnima, Ganga Dashahara, Naag Panchami, Krishna Janmashtami,
Ram Navami, Ganesha Chaturthi, Vijaya Dashmi, Deepawali, Kartik Purnima, Makar
Sankranti, Vasant Panchami, Shivaratri and Holi are the main festivals of the
Hindus. I'd, Moharram, Bakr-I'd, Barawafat and Shab-e-Barat are the major Muslim
festivals. New Years Day, Good-Friday, Easter and Christmas are the prominent
festivals of the Christians. Buddha Purnima for Buddhists, Mahavir Jayanti for
Jains, the birthday of Guru Nanak, Martyr's day of Guru Teg Bahadur and
Vaishakhi are the famous festivals of the people of Sikh faith
Kumbh Mela At Haridwar :
has been attracting the whole world with her rich cultural heritages and
spirituality. The renowned Kumbh Mela is a unique blend of all these.
Haridwar Kumbh has its importance as the last Kumbh of this century.
The Kumbh and the Ardh Kumbh
Fairs are held periodically, every twelve and
six years in Haridwar where a large number of pilgrims and devotees get together
to,commemorate the churning of the ocean by the Devas (Gods) and Asuras (Demons)
to obtain nector (Amrit).when the coveted Kumbh (jar) of nector was obtained one
of the Devas stopped at four places viz. Haridwar, Prayag, Nasik and Ujjain
before he finally arrived safely at heaven. A few drops of this nector is
supposed to have spilled in the water in these four places. Sages, saints and
pilgrims started periodically to flock to these Tirths to celebrate this divine
event by taking dips in the holy rivers. It is an unique event that blends
religious and social features of Indian society.
fair of great religious and cultural significance is held at Nanda Devi
Temple in September to commemorate the memory of Goddesses Nanda and
Sunanda. It is said to have started in Kumaon during the reign of Raja
Kalyan Chand in the 16th century.
Nanda means prosperity and
well being. Nanda Devi Mela is held as a symbol of prosperity, both
material and spiritual, of the hill regions. The Nanda Devi Melas are held
at Almora, Nainital, Nauti, Dandidhara, Munsyari and Ranikhet, of which
the Almora and Roopkund fairs are the most famous.
Shravan Mela, Jageshwar,
Jageshwar lying in the
beautiful Jatganga valley, housing one of the 12 Jyotirlingas of India, is
a complex of 12 temples in all. Two large fairs are held at Jageshwar, one
at the occasion of Shivratri and the other in the month of Shravan
Doonagiri Mela, Almora
Situated at an elevation of
2116 mts. Above sea level, Gananath is 47 kms. From Almora and is known
for its natural landscape. A fair is held here every year on Kartik
Poornima (Oct./Nov.) when thousands of pilgrims come to worship Lord Shiva
Dwarahat Mela, Almora
Situated in the wide valley of
Ram Ganga (West), Dwarahat is 38 kms. from Ranikhet having a cluster of
old temples. A huge fair is organized every year on Baisakhi day.
Kasar Devi Mela, Almora
The picturesque old part of
the town is the venue for a fair held twice a year during the summer and
winter months. It is said that Swami Vivekananda gained enlightenment in a
small cave at Kasar Devi in Almora.