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Raksha Bandhan In Kolkata

The celebrations of Raksha Bandhan in Kolkata very well portray the cultural richness of the city. Though Raksha Bandhan is a festival of North India, then also rakhi is celebrated with much fervor in Kolkata. This festival is celebrated by the name of 'Bhai Dooj' in kolkata and thus little difference can be viewed in the traditions and customs.

Here also the sisters after performing the aarti apply tilak on their brother's foreheads and tie the rakhi on their wrists. In addition celebrations of Raksha Bandhan in kolkata are very much influenced by the thoughts and ideologies of Guru Rabindranath Tagore. He made use of the importance of Raksha Bandhan among the Indians for spreading the feeling of brotherhood among the people of different castes and backgrounds.

In the year 1905, Rabindranath Tagore made the suggestion of using the festival of 'Raksha Bandhan' as a means of bringing people together in the times of crisis. Thus a simple ceremony of tying up of a thread came to be celebrated as an important festival in West Bengal especially Kolkata. Even today Raksha Bandhan is celebrated with the same vigor and fervor in kolkata. Special Rakhi Utsavs are organized in colleges while the students sing Rabindra Sangeet and also recite his poems to mark the day. Special sweets are distributed among people who take a pledge to be with each other in all good and bad times. Many social as well as cultural organizations also make special arrangements for Raksha Bandhan celebrations in order to spread the message of Rabindranath Tagore.

In addition even the common people await for this festival with much enthusiasm. Though it is not a major festival, but then also the whole city gets ready for the festival much in advance. A parallel to Rakhi is the festival of bhaiDooj in Kolkata which receives the same importance that Raksha Bandhan gets in North India. The festival of bhaidooj also symbolizes the bond of love between a brother and a sister but the difference lies in the traditions and customs of BhaiDooj and the time at which it falls in the year.

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