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Harvesting happiness

My parents live in rural Punjab, and I am there every second month,” says the gorgeous lady, who will usher in the New Year shooting in Hampi. With the festive fever this weekend, CS speaks to her to know more about Baisakhi in rural Punjab:

Gul Panag
Who: Gul Panag
What: On Baisakhi celebrations
Pic/ Satyajit Desai

A new start
Baisakhi is our New Year. I love to spend this day with my near and dear ones. However, it won’t be possible this time around as I am busy shooting for a TV series. Normally, I like to pray on Baisakhi thanking God for the year gone by and hoping for a brighter year ahead. I also like wearing new clothes, especially in the colour yellow as it signifies the golden fields. A nice lunch or dinner also sets the mood for the day.

Holiday time
The best Baisakhis are in Punjab in the rural area. It is the period when the wheat crop has been harvested and sold. The farmers are in a happy mood because work is less, and they are getting money for their produce. They also get more time to spend with friends and family. There is this short period before they start preparing the fields for the rice crop in late May.

Sense of community
Contrary to what some believe, Baisakhi is not a Sikh festival. It is a harvest festival. So, it brings together all communities in the rural areas. However, the occasion of Baisakhi is a big one in a Gurudwara as it is the core of the community. In villages, there are big gatherings on Baisakhi in gurudwaras, which is also a place to socialise and meet up with others. However, I am not a very religious person and believe that doing good deeds is more important than mere praying.

Spirit of enjoyment
I love the idea of new clothes on Baisakhi. I also enjoy attending social events held in Mumbai on this occasion. It is the perfect excuse to dress up, socialise and have some fun. For city Punjabis, it is a way of connecting with our roots so the fervour is a little more dance, music, et all. Back home in Punjab, celebrations are more homely. People go to the gurudwara or maybe for some shopping or just meet together for lunch. It might sound disappointing but there is not much Bhangra back in the gaons on Baisakhi.  

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