Vishuva Sankranti

Vishuva Sankranti
Maha Vishuva Sankranti
Also called Pana Sankranti,
Observed by Oriya people
Significance New Year as per the traditional Sidereal astrology
Date 1 Vaishakha (Oriya calendar) and (April 14 in the Gregorian calendar)
Celebrations Meru Yatra,Jhaamu Yatra,Chadak Parva
Observances Pujas, Processions, enjoying chhatua and Bel Pana

Pana Sankranti (Oriya: ପଣା ସଙ୍କ୍ରାନ୍ତି) or Maha Vishuva Sankranti (Oriya: ମହା ବିଷୁବ ସଙ୍କ୍ରାନ୍ତି, Sanskrit:महा विषुव संक्रमण), also known as Mesha Sankranti and Pana Sankranti, is celebrated as the Oriya New Year. The day marks the beginning of the New Year in the traditional Hindu Solar Calendar. On this day the sun enters the sidereal Aries or Mesha rashi. It generally falls on 13/14 April. The spring season is at zenith during this period and the summer is approaching. It is otherwise calculated as per Sidereal astrology.

Maha Vishuva Sankranti is similar to the New Year festivals observed elsewhere in India such as Baisakhi (Punjab), Bihu (Assam), Naba Barsha (Bengal), Bisu Parba (Tulu Nadu region in Karnataka), Vishu (Kerala), Puthandu (Tamil Nadu) and Ugadi in(Andhra Pradesh & Karnataka) .


Astrological evidence

There are specific reasons as to why the Vishuva Sankranti is considered as the first day of the solar year. On only two occasions around year, Mesha Sankramana and Tula Sankramana, the Sun fully rests on the equator. On these two dates, the length of days and nights remain equal. But in case of a sidereal zodiac, as used in Indian solar calendars, it has no connection with the equinoxes. Hence, the length of the Indian solar calendars is longer than the actual tropical solar year. The oriya solar month Mesha starts from this day.

Difference from Lunar Calender

Although people of Orissa calculate month from the next day of Purnima to Purnima, as per North Indian Purnimanta system, the year cycle of moon is less than 365 days of earth's rotation and some year also contain Adhika Maasa so the new year is calculated from the day of Mesha sankramana to fix a particular day.It is quite interesting that the oriya New Year is calculated from the day of Sankramana whereas the neibouring state Bengal celebrate Pohela Boishakh on the next day of Sankramana.


On this particular day, a small pot filled with pana or sweet drink of Mishri and water is hung on a basil (Tulsi) plant. There is a hole at the bottom of this pot which allows the water to fall from the pot, representing rain. The flour of horse gram chhatua along with Curd, Banana, is consumed by the people of Orissa after offering it to the Tulsi plant.[1] Special offerings are made to Shalagram, Shivalinga, Hanuman and other deities. The devi temples of Chandi, Biraja, and Sarala become crowded, which is called Jhaamu Yatra. In Northern Orissa it is called Chadak Parva. In Southern Orissa the day is celebrated as the end of month-long Danda nata, and the final ceremony is known as Meru Yatra. People all over the state worship Hanuman on this day and celebrate it as his birthday. People enjoy chhatua and Bel Pana with great pleasure.

See also


  1. ^ oriya new year. (2007-06-06). Retrieved on 2011-11-10.

Further reading

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