Pitru Paksha is a 16-day period in the Hindu calendar when the death rites ceremony of the family is performed on specific days. This process is called as Shradh or Tarpan and this period is also called as Mahalaya Paksha and Apara Paksha. In southern and western India, the Pitru Paksha falls in the second fortnight of the Hindu month of Bhadrapada. Pitru Paksha 2017 begins on Septemeber 5, 2017 and will be observed till September 19, 2017. Hindus who follow the Pitru Paksha avoid doing anything auspicious and religious during this time span. The 16-days of Mahalaya Paksha are used to perform the death rites of the dead, and there are specific muhurat timings assigned as per the Hindu calendar. The full schedule of Pitru Paksha 2017 comes in handy for those who need to figure out the Mahalaya Paksha Shradh Dates for performing the rites and rituals. Pitru Paksha: Importance and guidelines for the period of Shraddh.

The Pitru Paksha usually follows the fortnight immediately after the Ganesh festival and begins on the Purnima which is called as Shradh Purnima. There are special Shradh pujas that are done during the Pitru Paksha and the two most important rituals apart from the tailored rites are Bharani Shradh and Magha Shradh . The Magha Shradh is important as it signifies the Pitrs or the spirits of the departed ancestors, Bharani Shradh is known as Maha Bharani Shradh and is ruled by Yama, the God of the Death.

Pitru Paksha dates

While Bharani Shradh is normally done only once, after the demise of the person, however, according to Dharmasindhu, it can also be done every year. The 16-day Pitru Paksha is often looked at as a period of mourning and remembering the dead. Buying new clothes or new things in general and doing anything auspicious is avoided at this time by those who follow these beliefs. The most significant day of Pitrupaksh is Sarvapitri Amavasya or Mahalaya Amavasya, and according to the religious books, people who failed to perform the rituals during the 15-day Pitru Paksha can complete the rites on this date. The complete Pitru Paksha Schedule with Muhurat Timings according to Drikpanchang is given in the below table.

Full list of Mahalaya Paksha Shradh Dates 2017

Date Day Muhurat
Kutup Muhurat Rohini Muhurat Aparahna Muhurat
September 5, 2017 Shradh Purnima 12:12 to 13:01 (49 mins) 13:01 to 13:50 (49 mins) 13:50 to 16:18 (2 hours 24 mins)
September 6, 2017 Pratipada Shradh 12:12 to 13:01 (49 mins) 13:01 to 13:50 (49 mins) 13:50 to 16:18 (2 hours 24 mins)
September 7, 2017 Dwitiya Shradh 12:11 to 13:00 (49 mins) 13.00 to 13.49 (49 mins) 13:49 to 16:17 (2 Hours 27 Mins)
September 8, 2017 Tritiya Shradh 12:11 to 13:00 (49 mins) 13.00 to 13.49 (49 mins) 13:49 to 16:17 (2 Hours 27 Mins)
September 9, 2017 Chaturthi Shradh 12:11 to 13:00 (49 mins) 13.00 to 13.49 (49 mins) 13:49 to 16:15 (2 Hours 26 Mins)
September 10, 2017 Panchami Shradh 12:10 to 12:59 (48 mins) 12:59 to 13:48 (48 mins) 13:48 to 16:15 (2 hours 26 mins)
September 11, 2017 Shashthi Shradh 12:10 to 12:59 (48 mins) 12:59 to 13:48 (48 mins) 13:48 to 16:15 (2 hours 26 mins)
September 12, 2017 Saptami Shradh 12:10 to 12:58 (48 mins) 12:58 to 13:47 (48 mins) 13:47 to 16:13 (2 hours 26 mins)
September 13, 2017 Ashtami Shradh 12:09 to 12:58 (48 mins) 12:58 to 13:47 (48 mins) 13:47 to 16:13 (2 hours 26 mins)
September 14, 2017 Navami Shradh 12:09 to 12:58 (48 mins) 12:58 to 13:47 (48 mins) 13:46 to 16:12 (2 hours 26 mins)
September 15, 2017 Dashami Shradh 12:09 to 12:57 (48 mins) 12:57 to 13:46 (48 mins) 13:46 to 16:11 (2 hours 25 mins)
September 16, 2017 Ekadashi Shradh 12:08 to 12:57 (48 mins) 12:57 to 13:45 (48 mins) 13:46 to 16:11 (2 hours 25 mins)
September 17, 2017 Dwadashi Shradh, Trayodashi Shradh 12:08 to 12:56 (48 mins) 12:56 to 13:45 (48 mins) 13:45 to 16:10 (2 hours 25 mins)
September 18, 2017 Chaturdashi Shradh 12:08 to 12:56 (48 mins) 12:56 to 13:44 (48 mins) 13:45 to 16:09 (2 hours 24 mins)
September 19, 2017 Sarva Pitru Amavasya 12:07 to 12:56 (48 mins) 12:56 to 13:44 (48 mins) 13:44 to 16:09 (2 hours 24 mins)

The performance of Shradh by a son during Pitru Paksha is regarded as compulsory by Hindus, to ensure that the soul of the ancestor goes to heaven. The Pitru Paksha Shradh are called the Parvan Shradh and the auspicious time to perform these rites are either Kutup Muhurat and Rohina Muhurat. Some families also conduct ritual recitals during the time of Pitru Paksha. Reciting the religious scriptures such the Bhagavata Purana and the Bhagavad Gita and making charitable proceedings and giving to the needy is also a ritual followed in the hopes of the ancestor’s well being.