Bali Pratipada, also known as Bali Padyami or Padva, is the fourth day of Diwali. It falls in the Hindu month of Kartika and is the first day of the bright lunar fortnight. The day celebrates the victory of Lord Vishnu in the Vamana Avatar over the demon-king Bali and the home-coming of the demon-king to the earth. It is the day when Lord Krishna saved the people of Gokul from the anger of Lord Indra. In 2017, Bali Pratipada falls on October 20.
According to Hindu mythology, Bali Pratipada commemorates the victory of Lord Vishnu in the dwarf incarnation of Valama over demon-king Bali. King Bali, also glorified as Mahabali, was a generous person and people were happy and satisfied in his kingdom. He was popular for his bravery, uprightness, and dedication to god Vishnu. He was also arrogant and gods disliked him. The gods were upset by his harassment approached Vishnu to help them get rid of Bali.
Lord Vishnu took the form of a dwarf Vamana, his fifth incarnation out of his ten. Vamana approached Bali asking for reverence and alms. He sought a gift of three paces of land from the king to which he agreed. The dwarf then took the huge universal form and placed his first step on the universal space, the second on the earth and since there was no space for Vamana’s third step Bali offered his head to put his third step, realising that the dwarf was an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Vishnu expelled him to a place called Sutala, the nether-world.
Pleased with Bali’s generosity, Vishnu granted him a boon which allowed him to return to earth once in a year. His homecoming is celebrated by people by lighting lamps to dispel the darkness and spread love and wisdom. It is believed that Bali’s kingdom is identified as present-day Kerala.
Bali puja tithi: 6:37 am to 8:55 am & 3:50 pm to 6:08 pm
Pratipada tithi begins: 00:41 am on October 20, 2017
Pratipada tithi ends: 1:37 am on October 21, 2017