Essay on Baisakhi Festival:
The Baisakhi is a great festival in India. It is celebrated with great pomp and show throughout the country. Especially in North India, this festival has its own charm. This festival is connected with the crop season. The crop is ready. It is to be shorn. The auspicious day is 13th April every year.
In Punjab, this day is a day of fairs and festivals. All sorts of fun and frolic are enjoyed. The Punjabis have their own way of observing this day. Throughout the state, hundreds of fairs are held. The choicest foods are prepared. The reaping of the harvest starts. The corn is sorted out. Barrels of wheat and other cereals (corns) are piled up in the grain markets. But the celebrations of the Baisakhi go on unhindered.
The Punjabis are a live race. They hold fairs. They have mirth and merriments. They have their programme of dance and drama. The Bhangra is their special item. The youthful spirits of the Punjabis are sky-high. The young men and women in their colourful dresses with fluttering long handkerchiefs dance and dance for hours. They never feel exhausted. The Punjabi Bhangra is a special dance quite well-known throughout the world. The tall and ripe crops, their fragrance, the festival-like atmosphere pervades everywhere. It is a picture of every town.
The fairs are held near a river or near the burial of some saint or in some open place. The villagers gather there in thousands. All the people of the adjoining areas come there at their best. The village marts are set up. Sale and purchase go on quite briskly. Many sorts of competitions are arranged. Games like kabaddi and kho-kho are played. Even wrestling bouts are the speciality of the day. The well-known wrestlers of the area and even from afar visit the fair. They add to the charm of the occasion. Great prizes in the form of cash and kind are won. The whole scene is worth-enjoying. The total function becomes memorable till the next day of Baisakhi.
In our village, this day is a gala day for all of us. We make arrangements weeks ahead of the actual day. All look happy and joyful. The long wait for the actual celebrations ends. People throng the place of the fair in thousands. But last year the whole charm of the day was marred. As usual, the Baisakhi fair was held by the side of a river. The fair was in full swing. The young boys of the village arranged a swimming contest. To witness it, the people assembled on the bak of the river. They encouraged the swimmers. They gave them a big hand, clapping and cheering.
It was a morale booster for the swimmers. In the middle of the river, one youth became breathless. All of us saw that he was lagging behind. We thought that he was gaining breath. With added stamina, he would outshine the rest of the swimmers. People cried in chorus a word of encouragement for him. But by then, he had gone under the water. Someone quite close to him on the other side of the bank sensed danger. He cried “Help! Help!!” But by then, it was too late. The youth had drowned. The merriment turned out to be a tragedy- a drowning incident. There were wails and cries for the young bud. His parents burst into sobs and tears. They could not be consoled. Their loss was irreparable. The happiness of the people was shattered. Joy gave way to sorrow. People returned weeping and wailing. What a bad day, inauspicious for all of us.