Lohri - Festival of harvest, dance and celebrations
Lohri is the harvest festival that is popularly celebrated on 13th January. It is a festival of zest and Zeal that mark the culmination of the chilly winter. It is the time when the sun changes its position from the North direction to the South direction. It is time when days are going to be big means sun remains for longer duration.
How People celebrate Lohri:
Lohri is primarily a festival celebrated with family, friends, and relatives. It has a special significance for Farmers. It is the time when new Kharif crops are soon going to be sown, and Rabi crops are harvested.
It is time when people take a round around bonfire and put Til (sesame seeds), Rewari (sugar-candy), puffed rice, Phulle (popcorn) into it.
Many people dance to the beats of the drum or Dhol; It is a double headed drum played using two wooden sticks. It is slung over the neck of the player while he plays the instrument this form of dance is called Bhangra. It is considered to be the most exuberant and exciting dancing style and people wear the most vibrant colors to mark the occasion.
Lohri is also important for newlywed Punjabi bride. She needs to wear new and vibrantly colored dress, dress up in her best for the occasion wearing lots of bangles, and decorate her palms with Mehndi (Hena). The husband also wears a new dress and wears an elaborate turban. Bride’s in-laws hold dinner and invite all their relatives and friends. New bride is gifted with new clothes and jewellery for the occasion by her in-laws and other friends and relatives.
Similar celebrations took place on the first lohri of a newborn baby. Mother of the dressed up in new and gorgeous clothes and heavy jewellery, and Mehndi is applied on her hands in an elaborate pattern. She is asked to sit with the newborn baby in her arms and family, relatives, and friends gift her with fruits, sweets, clothes, jewellery and money.
There are the groups of children moved from door to door, singing the Dulla Bhatti folk-song:
"Dulla Bhatti ho! Dulle ne dhi viyahi ho! Ser shakar pai ho!" (Dulla married her daughter and gave his daughter a kilo of sugar as a marriage gift).
People give them money along with til, Rewari, puffed rice and Phulle.
Legend of Lohri
There is an interesting legend behind Lohri. According to the history of Punjab, Dulla Bhatti was born in a Muslim Rajput Rajput is short for “Raj Putra” which means “son of a king” in Sanskrit. They came into prominence during 6th and 7th century and dominated most of the central India. Rajputs are considered the royal and martial clans of central, western and northern India as well as eastern Pakistan.Bhatti family In Pindi Bhattian, Gujrat (now in Pakistan). His family was descended of Rawal Jaisal Singh, who founded "The Golden City" of Jaisalmer.
Dulla's grandfather’s name was Rai Sandal Khan Bhatti, and his father’s name was Rai Farid Khan Bhatti. Rai Sandal Khan Bhatti was a tribal chief of Rajputs of the area. At that time, Mughals were trying to consolidate their hold over the entire country under the command of Babur. Rai Sandal Khan Bhatti and Farid Khan Bhatti along with their Rajput tribe opposed Mughal dominance and refused to pay their taxes.
Dullha followed the footsteps of his grandfather and father to fight against Mughals. He started Guerilla warfare and revolted against Mughal emperor, Akbar. He also made a small Army with the help of Salim, Akbar’s son. Dulla started stealing Akbar's imperial treasure, gifts & his horses. He also robbed the ministers, merchants who were working for Akbar. He distributed the stolen money to poor & needy people and help in getting poor girls married. It is believed that Dulla Bhatti had restored the prestige of an innocent girl whose modesty was outraged by a Mughal general. He adopted that girl as his daughter and arranged for her marriage. People still remember him as a Punjabi Robin Hood.
Heads off to Dulla Bhatti!!!
We all must learn the patriotism from him who fought with Mughals till his last breath and never surrendered before them to obey their supremacy. We all must take a pledge that we must understand our rights & duties well. We should not indulge in activities that can defame the name of our nation. We all must love our country & fellow countrymen. We all must untidily stand against all odds and make our country, a place of peace and love.
He was much more like ‘Robinhood’ who used to rob rich people and donate the money in poor people. Dulha Bhatti also rescued many Punjabi girls and saved their life. He also arranged boys for those saved girls and also used to give dowry. So if you hear next time Lohri song ‘Dulha Bhatti’ doesn’t get surprised. As it has the word to express gratitude towards Dulha Bhatti.
Initially, Lohri is celebrated in Punjab, J&K, and Delhi but it is popular in other parts of India.