Vasant Panchami, also known as Shri Panchami, Basant Panchami, and Saraswati Panchami, is dedicated to Goddess Saraswati – the Goddess of knowledge, music, arts, science and technology. The festival marks the beginning of the spring season – Vasant means ‘Spring’ and Panchami means ‘the fifth day’. It is among the two spring festivals of Hindus – the other being Holi. Vasant Panchami is observed on the fifth day in the month of ‘Magha’ which typically falls in the month of January or February according to the Gregorian calendar. In 2018, Vasant Panchami falls on January 22.
Vasant Panchami celebrates the spring and harvest after the cold and dreary winter months. People choose this day to introduce kids to reading and writing. Kids are made to write their first letters in front of the Goddess Saraswati idol. The ritual is known as Akshar-Abhyasam or Vidya-Arambham. Students worship notebooks and educational items on the day and seek blessings of the goddess. Those involved in music seek the blessings of the goddess of music and art. There is also a tradition of offering delicious bhog to the goddess. The bhog comprises of kheer and Khichdi mixed with vegetables.
Vasant Panchami Puja Muhurta: 7:18 to 12:50
Duration: 5 hours 31 mins
Panchami tithi begins: 3:33 pm on January 21, 2018
Panchami tithi ends: 4:24 pm on January 22, 2018