World ? Asia ? India ? Mumbai

Baisakhi Festival

Apr 2010 (annual)
Cost: Free
Baisakhi (or Vaisakhi) means two things to two religious groups in India - either it is New Year Day to the Hindus, or it marks the day back in 1699 when the tenth Sikh Guru, Guru Gobind Singh, founded the Khalsa (the Sikh brotherhood). Mumbai comes alive with celebrations - especially the Sikh temples in the Fort Area.
This day marks a very special day, and Mumbai, like other parts of India will come alive with general festivities. The temples celebrate the most of course. Religious processions, featuring mock duels and loud bands playing religious tunes also parade through the streets. There are many Gurudwaras (Sikh Temples) in Bombay ȤȤ the most convenient for foreign visitors is located in the Fort Area.

Though it is celebrated almost everywhere in India, Baisakhi is celebrated with much more enthusiasm in Punjab. It not only marks the anniversary of Guru Gobind SinghȤȤs gift of Panth Khalsa to the Sikhs everywhere, it commemorates the day Sikhism took on a militant aspect.

Respectful dress inside the temple is imperative; shoulders must be covered and shoes left outside the entrance.
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