Cheti Chand

Cheti Chand

India is known as the land of festivals. There are more festivals in India than anywhere else, with celebrations taking place almost every day of the year. Each festival celebrates a particular event; while some celebrate the changing of the seasons, the harvest, the rains, or the full moon. Others commemorate holy events, celestial spirits’ and saints’ birthdays, or the arrival of the New Year. With varied religious and cultural backgrounds, most parts of India observe a variety of these festivals. Cheti Chand, which is celebrated by the Sindhi community, is one such festival.

Cheti Chand is a unique festival for Sindhis that marks the start of the Hindu New Year. Cheti Chand is celebrated on the first day of the year, in the Sindhi month of Chet, according to the lunar cycle of the lunisolar Hindu calendar. Cheti Chand, which comes on the same day as Gudi Padwa for Marathis, is the Sindhi New Year. Varun Dev (Water God) Sai Uderolal, also known as Jhulelal, celebrates Cheti Chand as his birthday.

The Importance of Cheti Chand | Why Is Jhulelal Jayanti Celebrated?

Cheti Chand is a Sindhi New Year’s Day celebration commemorating the birthday of Sindhi Patron Saint Jhulelal also known as Uderolal. In the 10th century, a cruel king named Mirkhshah ruled the vast and fertile kingdom of Sindh, according to legend. He made threats to the residents. The group assembled and prayed to their Gods on the banks of the Sindh River, fearful for their lives and devastated by the relentless threats. According to legend, they received a prophecy from the heavens following 40 days of fasting.

According to the prophecy, Devaki and Ratanchand Lohano will have a holy baby who would save them from their woes. Jhulelal, the Lord of the Swing, was born from this infant. People claim to have seen a miraculous glimpse of the entire Sindhu River flowing within the baby’s mouth. Mirkshah tried everything he could to destroy Jhulelal, but each time he failed. As Jhulelal grew older, he met Mirkshah and used his divine knowledge to transform him. Sindh was once again a peaceful kingdom.

This day is considered auspicious and favourable for beginning new endeavours. After worshipping Jhulelal, the Sindhi community reveals and shows their rich culture through dance, drama, poetry, and folk arts. Are you planning to launch a new business this year?

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The Sindhi community refers to “Chaitra” as “Chet,” or the first month. Furthermore, in this Panchang, every new month begins with the new moon or Chand; as a result, the Sindhi community refers to the festival as “Cheti Chand.”People used to go to a river or lake on the full moon day and give ‘Akho,’ which was a pinch of rice mixed with milk and flour. The rite should be done at a well if there isn’t a river or ‘Darya’ nearby.

Cheti Chand 2021 Date:

The Hindu Panchang determines when the Cheti Chand Festival will take place.
Cheti Chand is honored on the second day of Chaitra Shukla Paksha, or the second day of the Sindhi month of Chet, according to this calendar. This usually means that it will be in the Gregorian calendar at the end of March or early April and will usually be on Gudi Padwa and Ugadi the same day or next.

Cheti Chand: 13th of April, 2021, Tuesday
Cheti Chand Muhurat: 6:46 PM to 7:51 PM
Duration: 1 Hour 5 Minutes
Pratipada Tithi Starts: 12th of April, 2021, 8:00 AM
Pratipada Tithi Ends: 13th of April, 2021, 10:16 AM

Cheti Chand Traditions | Sindhi New Year Celebrations:

The day is significant for Sindhis since it is believed that Varun Dev emerged as Jhulelal on this day to save the Sindhi community from a king who wanted to kill Sindhi culture and Hinduism. It’s also a day of gratitude and prayer for the God of Water. Sindhis pray for forty days, a practice known as Chaliho. Sindhis rejoice for Cheti Chand after Chaliho. They fast as well, and after praying, they eat fruits to break their fast.

On this day, many Sindhis take their Behrana Sahib (an oil lamp, crystal sugar, cardamom, grapes, and Akha) to a nearby river or lake. They always have a Jhulelal idol with them. Jyot Jagan, a five-wicks wheat flour lamp, is then lit. Sindhis sing Pallav to invoke God’s blessings after Behrano Saheb is submerged in water and then share the prasad. Charitable events are carried out, such as clothing donations and food distribution to the poor and vulnerable, and nutritious meals are served for the whole family and relatives. Furthermore, people greet one another with the phrase ” Cheti Chand Jyon Lakh Lakh Wadayun Athav.”

Cheti Chand's Delightful Dishes:

Everybody is fond of eating and especially when it comes to festivals, it can’t be without special delicacies. As we all know, Indian festivals are known for having a high value for delectable food varieties to be served. As a result, here are the best Cheti Chand dishes:

Sweets – Tairi, Seero Malpuo, Malpua with Rabri, and Gulabjamun.
Drinks – Khirni, Thandai, and Falooda.
Snacks – Mitho Lolo, and Seyun Patata.
Lunch – Sai Bhaji, Sindhi Kadhi, Dal Pakwan, Sindhi Pilaf, and Sindhi Koki.

Activities and Events:

  • Chaliho Saheb – The most common and widely practised custom is to worship the ‘Water God’ for forty days. It is now known as Chaliho (forty) Saheb and is observed in the same way. The followers of Jhulelal celebrate the day as “Thanksgiving Day” after forty days of Chaliho.
  • Baharana Sahib – Another important custom observed on this day is the public procession known as Baharana Sahib. Jyot, Sugar Candy, Phota, Fruits, and Akha make up Baharana Sahib. A Bronze Pot (kalsh) with a Coconut inside is surrounded by Cloth, Flowers, Leaves, and a Murti (Idol) of God Jhulelal. Popular Sindhi folk dance “Chhej” is performed by Sindhis of all ages during the Bahrana Sahib procession. Baharana Sahib is brought to a nearby river or lake on this day. After offering “Akho” (preparation of good quality rice and sugar) to Jal Devata, ‘Sesa’ is distributed among the devotees once they reach the riverbank (water god). This tradition stems from an incident in Jhuelal’s life.

Some cities also organise various cultural programs on this day to express the rich cultural heritage of Sindhis. This festival is celebrated with zeal and pomp by all Sindhi organisations and institutions.

Businesspeople use the day to open new accounts. Sindhis close their shops and activities on this day and assemble at a group building (Panchayati Hall) or at Jhulelal Temple, where Jhulelal is worshipped after a session of singing devotional songs.

Cheti Chand, also known as Jhulelal Jayanti, is a festival of joy, laughter, and celebrations. Ganesha wishes you and your families a prosperous and healthy New Year and Cheti Chand. May this Cheti Chand bless you with a new spirit, a fresh start, and abundant prosperity.