Cheti Chand, one of the most important festivals of the Sindhi community, is just around the corner. Celebrated in the Hindu month of Chaitra, this festival gets its name because this month is called Chet in Sindhi. This year Cheti Chand falls on April 9. It is usually celebrated a day after Gudi Padwa and Ugadi which is on April 8 this year. The second day of the Chaitra month is Cheti Chand. Sindhis celebrate Cheti Chand to welcome the New Year and it also marks the birth of Saint Jhulelal who is the patron saint of their community. Jhulelal is also called Ishtadev Uderolal and is considered the water god’s incarnation. Also Read - AIIMS PG Entrance Exams 2020: Admit Cards Issued, Download From aiimsexams.org
After observing 40 days of penance called Chaliho Sahab, Sindhis celebrate Cheti Chand as a day of thanksgiving. During Chahilo Sahab faithful offer prayers to the water god by giving up luxuries like using soap or oil for a bath, not wearing new clothes, eating simple food and singing prayer hymns and songs in their god’s praise. Cheti Chand marks the end of Chahilo and the day of celebrations. Also Read - BJP Leader Kapil Mishra Grabs Negative Limelight For India as Mark Zuckerberg Criticises His Delhi Riots Threat in Facebook’s Hate Speech Policy
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On the day of Cheti Chand, Sindhis observe a tradition called the Baharana Sahib. This is essentially a procession that consists of people carrying an oil lamp, fruits, flowers, coconut, a bronze pot, sugar candy, cardamom, rice and water covered with a cloth and leaves. There is also an idol of Jhulelal that is part of the procession. Sindhis sing and dance on their way to a nearby lake or pond to pay their respects to the water god. Upon reaching the water body, they offer good quality rice and sugar to the deity and then distribute ‘sesa’ or sesame among the devotees.
Today Sindhi families organize melas or community meetings where special Sindhi delicacies are prepared and dance and song performances are part of the celebrations. Many Sindhi families also stay awake the whole night singing devotional songs in praise of Jhulelal. The day is celebrated with much pomp and fervor.
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