Maithili New Year

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Maithili New Year
Observed by Nepali Maithils, Indian Maithils
Type Festival, Mithila, India & Mithila, Madhesh, Nepal.
Significance Maithili New Year
Celebrations Feasting, gift-giving, visiting homes
Date 1st Baisakh (14 April)
Frequency annual

Juir Sheetal (জুড়ি শীতল / जुड़ि शीतल) or Maithili New Year is the celebration of the first day of the Maithili new year. This day usually falls on 14 April on Gregorian calendar by the Maithils in Mithila region of India and Nepal. This is also called Nirayana Mesh Sankranti, Nepal Nava Barsha or Tirhuta new year in some regions of Mithila.[1] The festive occasion is in keeping with the Vikram Samvat, an official calendar of Nepal and whole of Mithila region.

Origin and significance[edit]

The Maithili New Year follows the Nirayanam vernal equinox and falls on 14 April (may sometimes vary by a day) on the Gregorian year. 14 April marks the first day of the traditional Vikram Samvat .
Tropical vernal equinox fall around 22 March, and adding 23 degrees of trepidation or oscillation to it, we get the Hindu sidereal or Nirayana Mesha Sankranti (Sun's transition into Nirayana Aries).[2]

Hence, the Maithili calendar begins on the same date, with Baishakh as first month of the year. It is also observed by most traditional calendars Nepal as well as in India as in Tamil Nadu puthandu, Assam, Bengal, Kerala, Manipur, Orissa, Punjab, Tripura etc. not to mention Bangladesh, Mynmar, Cambodia, Laos, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Tibet and China.[3]
Also it is important to note that this day is also called Nepal dhwajadanam i.e. the day Flag of Nepal to be flown and hence Mithila's flag (in rectangular saffron a pitcher on the point of plough as representing the birth of Nepalese God or Mother Sita from the Earth when Rajarshi King Janak of Nepal, the king of Mihtila did he Haleshti Yajna. It is also the birthday of Raja Salhesh (Shailesh - the king of Himalyas region of Nepal who won area up to Tibet) whose garden is at the Mahisautha in Siraha district headquarters of Nepal. In every Mithila village there is 'Rajaji's gahwar,' which is worshipped mostly by Paswans but by all and hence, this day is symbolizing communal harmony.

Official significance[edit]

Maithili Calendar is the official Calendar of Mithila region of Madhesh, Nepal since the time of Janaka and the national holiday is declared on 1ST Baisakh of Vikram Samvat. After a long period of demand, Bihar government in 2011 declared this day as public holiday to be observed state wide. Officially, the Maithili New year day is called as Mithila Diwas by the Government of Bihar. Every year there will be holiday for Mithila Diwas on 14 April in the Indian State of Bihar on account of the great festival of Juir Sheetal.[4]

Related holidays in other cultures[edit]

It coincides with the New Years in many other Southern Asian calendars, including:

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]