New Year Day – January 1

New Year Day – January 1

New Year Day, also called simply New Year’s or New Year, is observed on January 1st.

The first day of the year on the modern Gregorian calendar as well as the Julian calendar is called New Year Day. The Gregorian Calendar is used as the most common civil calendar in the world. In India, almost all official and non-official dating needs including the education system, business enterprises, and government documentation are filled by the usage of the Gregorian Calendar.

The Gregorian calendar or the International English calendar is based on the Solar calendar ( with slight modifications). The Gregorian calendar also has a lunisolar calendar, which is used to determine the date of Easter. This is the reason Easter date changes every year but Christmas falls on the same day.

In fact, festivals and celebrations marking the beginning of the calendar have been around for thousands of years. While some festivities were simply a chance to drink and be merry, many other New Year celebrations were linked to agricultural or astronomical events.

In Japan, this event is typically celebrated between the first and third days of January, just as most people do. But the festivities may also be extended through the first week of January. In many Asian countries the New Year in January or February, depending on when the new moon falls. This New Year holiday is also known as the Spring Festival. Persians observe the New Year on March 21, which is the first day of spring. The Assyrian New Year also celebrates spring, and it falls on the first day of April. In Thailand, people usher in the New Year from April 13 through April 15 or 16.

Also throughout India, though most of the festivals are according to the lunisolar Hindu calendar, festivals like Sankranti/ Pongal/ Lohri/ Maghi/ Uttarayan, etc, are as per the Solar Hindu calendar. So Sankranti is always on January 14th. It is also celebrated in South & Southeast Asian countries with different names.

Also Read: What is New Year Eve

Indian New Year’s Day has several variations depending on the region and is based on the Hindu calendar. Christians in India celebrate January 1 as the New Year according to the Gregorian calendar. Catholic Christians also celebrate January 1. Hindu In Hinduism, different regional cultures celebrate the new year at different times of the year. In Assam, Bengal, Kerala, Nepal, Odisha, Punjab, and Tamil Nadu, households celebrate the new year when the Sun enters Aries on the Hindu calendar. This is normally on April 14 or April 15, depending on the leap year. Elsewhere in northern/central India, the Vikram Samvat calendar is followed.

According to that, the new year day is the first day of the Chaitra Month, also known as Chaitra Shukla Pratipada or Gudi Padwa. This basically is the first month of the Hindu calendar, the first Shukla Paksha (fortnight), and the first day. This normally comes around March 23–24, mostly around the Spring Equinox in Gregorian Calendar. The new year is celebrated by paying respect to elders in the family and by seeking their blessings. They also exchange tokens of good wishes for a healthy and prosperous year ahead.

The Sikh New Year is celebrated as per the Nanakshahi calendar. The epoch of this calendar is the birth of the first Sikh Guru, Guru Nanak in 1469. New Year’s Day falls annually on what is March 14 in the Gregorian Western calendar.

Tamil New Year (Puthandu) is celebrated on April 13 or April 14. Traditionally, it is celebrated as Chiththirai Thirunaal in parts of Tamil Nadu to mark the event of the Sun entering Aries. Telugu New Year (Ugadi), Kannada New Year (Yugadi) is celebrated in March (generally), April (occasionally).

Traditionally, it is celebrated as Chaitram Chaitra Shuddha Padyami in parts of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka to mark the event of New Year’s Day for the people of the Deccan region of India. It falls on a different day every year because the Hindu calendar is a lunisolar calendar. The Saka calendar begins with the month of Chaitra (March–April) and Ugadi/Yugadi marks the first day of the new year. Chaitra is the first month in Panchanga which is the Indian calendar.

Also Read: Reason for celebrating New Year

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Simmi Kamboj

Simmi Kamboj is the Founder and Administrator of Ritiriwaz, your one-stop guide to Indian Culture and Tradition. She had a passion for writing about India's lifestyle, culture, tradition, travel, and is trying to cover all Indian Cultural aspects of Daily Life.