When you are in and around the northeastern part of India, then do make it appoint to understand the culture that exists here and the traditional ways of the people here. India is a land of festivals and all Indians consider it a great experience to enjoy every festival the way it should be. Days of preparations and months of waiting gives them good results when finally the day of the festival arrives and they once again go through all the fun, laughter, enjoyment and the rituals notwithstanding.
One such festival is the Bihu festival, of Assam. This is an occassion which surpasses all barriers between people. The Assamese are of a humble origin and are very modest. Their festivals exhibit this truth and honesty that is so characteristic of them. Their free nature and uninhibited attitude gives them the opportunity to celebrate such festivals. The Assamese observe three Bihus.
The Bihu word is of Dimasa kachari origin. These are a group of tribes in the areas of Assam living since ancient times.
People from all castes, religion, faith, and creed join their beliefs and celebrate the festival of Bihu. While the scenic beauty of Assam needs no introduction, it can only be aid that these splendid hills and beautiful valleys resound with the melody of the festival of Bihu.
Bohag Bihu is a festival which is celebrated in April, Magh Bihu in January and Kati Bihu in October and November.
Bihu festival is celebrated on occasion of good farming. The paddy growth is acknowledged and the Assamese thank God for his bounty. The sowing of seeds is celebrated with Rongali Bihu, the transplantation of saplings is celebrated with kati Bihu and the harvest period is celebrated with Magh Bihu.
The Bohag Bihu is celebrated in the months of April, January sees the celebration of the Magh Bihu and the October month is celebrated with the Kati Bihu. Thus the three festivals also represent the three seasons winter, autumn and spring.
This festival is a festival of the entire region and so there is a lot of unity and co-operation coupled with togetherness for all the people.
In the recent years, even the festivals are getting commercialized so all the people in Assam are organizing the festival on grand scales. However the basic intention of paying obeisance to God and thanking him hasn’t changed. The Bihu festival is not complete without the Bihu dance and the Bihu songs. These folk songs with catchy tunes and lovely dance steps encourages all to be a part of the group which is dancing. The general camaraderie is sprinkled with a reverence that is unmistakable and the atmosphere is generally electric.
Thus the Dimasa Kachari tribe which started this festival is today very famous with this celebration. This agrarian group has Brai Shibraj as its God. Bi means to ask and Shu is peace and prosperity. The word Bishu slowly got adapted to the now famous Bihu.
Festivals are an occasion to celebrate and get together and feel happy. Bihu is one such festival which brings together all the people of Assam.