Harela is an annual Hindu festival celebrated in the hill states of Uttarakhand and some regions of Himachal Pradesh. The Harela festival is very popular in the Kumaun region of Uttarakhand. As per the Hindu Luni-Solar calendar, the Harela festival is celebrated on the first day of Shravan-Maas, also known as Shravan-Sankranti or Kark-Sankranti.  It is a festival that marks the onset of the monsoon season and is dedicated to the worship of the deities where people pray for a good harvest and prosperity.

Harela marks the beginning of the sowing cycle and hence is considered very auspicious. This year, Harela 2023 will be celebrated on Monday, July 17. As Harela 2023 nears, here’s all you need to know about the history and significance of the auspicious festival.

Harela 2023 Date

Harela 2023 will be celebrated on Monday, July 17. Harela Festival is a Symbol of Happiness, Nature Conservation: Uttarakhand CM Dhami.

Harela History

According to religious beliefs, the origins of the festival can be traced to the Neo-lithic fertility festivals, which were marked as the religious celebration of the wedding of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. Harela means ‘Day of Green’, symbolizing green crops or greenery. The festival holds great significance in the agrarian communities in the region. In the Garhwal region, there is a tradition of planting saplings/plants on the day of the Harela festival by individuals or by the community.  The festival of Harela is called Hariyali/Rihyali in Kangra, Shimla, and Sirmour regions, and Dakhrain in Jubbal and Kinnaur regions of Himachal Pradesh.

Harela Significance

Harela has great significance, especially in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand. The festival symbolizes a new harvest and the rainy season. For sowing Harela, different types of seeds like wheat, barley, paddy, maize, or mustard are sown in a basket and are kept to grow for 11 days. Sawan Somwar 2023 Complete Schedule: Shravan Month Start and End Dates, Vrat Significance and Celebrations Dedicated to Lord Shiva.

The Harela is then cut on the day of Kark Sankranti. This is followed by people worshipping Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. On the final day of Harela, the sprouted barley is uprooted and distributed among family members and friends.

Harela 2023 Date, History and Significance

People exchange Harela as a symbol of goodwill and blessings for a fruitful agricultural season. The festival also involves cultural performances, singing folk songs, and traditional dances.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jul 16, 2023 11:41 AM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).