Bengali New Year (Poila Baisakh) 2020 Date: Poila Baisakh is the first day of the Bengali calendar, so it is celebrated as the Bengali New Year. Mainly popular in West Bengal and among the Bengali community, this day is celebrated with much fanfare.
This festival generally falls around April 13 or 14, according to the Gregorian calendar. This year, the much-awaited festival will be celebrated on April 14. People clean and decorate their houses to welcome the New Year, and also make beautiful colourful rangolis or alpona outside their homes. They visit temples and pray for good fortune and prosperity in the coming year.
According to the Drikpanchang, the legend says that King Shoshangko of ancient Bengal is credited with starting the Bengali era. The starting point of the Bengali era is estimated to be in 594 in the Gregorian calendar. Hence, Bengali year is 594 less than the Gregorian calendar if it is before Pohela Boishakh or 593 less if it is after Pohela Boishakh.
While some people argue about the origin of the Bengali calendar, it is believed that it was introduced by Emperor Akbar, and is a combination of solar Hindu calendar and the lunar Islamic calendar.
Poila Baisakh also marks the beginning of the new financial year for the Bengali business community, which visits shops and buys valuables as it signifies good fortune. They also worship Lord Ganesha and Goddess Lakshmi on this day. People wear new clothes and indulge themselves in sweet delicacies, to celebrate the day.