Bhubaneswar: Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Governor Ganeshi Lal and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Saturday took to their respective Twitter handles to greet people on the auspicious occasion of Nuakhai festival.
They prayed for everyone’s good health and well-being. “Nuakhai Juhar! Greetings to everyone on this auspicious occasion. On Nuakhai we laud the outstanding efforts of our industrious farmers and their role in nation building. I pray for everyone’s good health and well-being,” read the PM’s tweet.
CM Patnaik in Sambalpuri language asked people to follow Covid-19 guidelines while observing the festival. In a video message shared on his Twitter handle, he said, “Nuakhai is not just a festival but it is an identity of our art, culture and tradition.”
Greetings to everyone on this auspicious occasion. On Nuakhai we laud the outstanding efforts of our industrious farmers and their role in nation building.
I pray for everyone's good health and well-being.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) September 11, 2021
— Naveen Patnaik (@Naveen_Odisha) September 11, 2021
ଗଣପର୍ବ ନୂଆଁଖାଇ ଅବସରରେ ମାନ୍ୟବର ରାଜ୍ୟପାଳ ସମସ୍ତ ଓଡ଼ିଶାବାସୀ ବିଶେଷ କରି ପଶ୍ଚିମ ଓଡିଶାର ସମସ୍ତ ଭାଇ ଭଉଣୀ ମାନଙ୍କୁ ହାର୍ଦ୍ଦିକ ଶୁଭେଚ୍ଛା ଓ ଅଭିନନ୍ଦନ ଜଣାଇଛନ୍ତି। ମା' ସମଲେଇ ସମସ୍ତଙ୍କୁ ସୁଖ ଓ ସମୃଦ୍ଧି ପ୍ରଦାନ କରନ୍ତୁ। #NuakhaiJuhar pic.twitter.com/IgxxPAYeZa
— Governor Odisha (@GovernorOdisha) September 11, 2021
Nuakhai is an agrarian festival mainly observed by people of western Odisha. It is observed to celebrate the reaping of new crop. According to the calendar, Nuakhai is celebrated on Panchami Tithi (the fifth day) of the lunar fortnight of the month of Bhadrapada or Bhadraba falling September 11 this year, the day after Ganesh Chaturthi festival. New rice is offered to presiding deities on this day.
On Nuakhai, new and fresh rice is offered to the presiding deities of different districts. While, in Sambalpur, the new rice or ‘nabanna’ is offered to ‘Maa Samalei’, in Boudh district, the new rice is offered to ‘Maa Bhairabi’. ‘Maa Samalei’ in Jharsuguda and Bargarh districts, ‘Maa Samalei’ and ‘Maa Sikhar Bashini’ in Sundatgarh district, ‘Maa Patenswari’ in Bolangir district and ‘Maa Sureswari’ in Subarnapur district are offered the ‘nabanna’.
Every year, these shrines witness a huge gathering of devotees. But, like last year, this year too the festival lost its sheen due to prevailing Covid-19 condition.
Traditionally, the entire family comes together on the occasion to share the nabanna on this occasion. Youngsters pay respect (Pranam) and seek blessings of elders in the family and locality as well, after eating Nuakhai prasad together with family members. It also is an occasion for family reunion as people working outside come back to their homes to celebrate the festival.