Baisakhi Festival, Punjab
Baisakhi marks the beginning of the solar year (New Year) as well as the harvesting of North India’s main crop, and is celebrated in Punjab with great fervour. For Sikhs, the day is also a commemoration of the founding of the Khalsa Panth (Sikh brotherhood) by Guru Gobind Singh in 1699. Farmers give ‘thanks’ to the Lord Almighty for their fortune and pray for a better crop the next year. The holy book of the Sikhs, ‘Granth Sahib’ is taken in a procession, led by the ‘Panj Pyaras’ (five senior Sikhs) who are symbolic of the original leaders.
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