Vasant Panchami or Basant Panchami also called as Saraswati Puja is a festival in the Indian society that marks the preparation for the arrival of spring.
The festival is celebrated across India in different ways. It also carries significance in the Indian agrarian culture as it is as the farmers celebrate it announcing the arrival of the spring and the mustard harvest.
On this auspicious day Goddess Saraswati the goddess of learning is worshipped. Schools, colleges, educational institutions organise Saraswati puja and cultural activities on the occasion and pray for the knowledge and prosperity in the society.
In Indian society at many places, the puja is celebrated with performing different rituals and social practices. Like somewhere children worship their books and pen, while somewhere people sing folk songs. In many places people organize musical programmes as a part of worship. Distribution of sweets and fruits and community feast is an integral part of the celebration.
This day of learning holds a significance in the lives of those gurus who impart learning on a day to day basis. On the occasion of Basant Panchami, City Spidey spoke to a few teachers to know what significance does this day holds in their life.
Sanjay Jha is a classical vocalist shared that he and his friend used to collect chanda (donation) for Saraswati Puja and with that money, they purchased a statue of Goddess Saraswati and worshipped her with the people in their neighbourhood.
“When I was in school nobody knew that I am able to sing. When I sang my first song in my school I received a good feedback from my teachers. Since that day I teach music for a living and it has become a part of my life,” explains Jha.
MP Singh, President of Rangashree Natya Sanstha shared his own story of Vasant Panchami. Stating that Vasant Panchami is very close to his heart, Singh celebrated Vasant Panchami, doing short length dramas in his school days. When he was in 12th grade he acted in a full length drama ‘Vishv Dhan Ki Shadi’ on Vasant Panchami which his elder brother had directed.
“Students had to worship Goddess Saraswati early morning with their parents and they had to present their favourite books at the feet of Goddess Saraswati and chant Gayatri Mantra. This was a common practice during school days for us on the occasion,” shared Singh.
Sagarika Uppal is a professor in Trinity Institute of professional Studies, Dwarka. According to her Vasant Panchami is the festival of knowledge, which plays an important role in our life. In the 4th grade it was the first time for her to know about this festival. When she was in school, she participated in dance competition on every Vasant Panchami.
“Vasant Panchami is the festival dedicated to Goddess Saraswati and people wear yellow colour as it is believed to be Saraswati’s favourite colour. Students have to read a few lines which are dedicated to Maa Saraswati and also touch our mother’s feet as she is our first teacher,” concludes Uppal.