Indian Festivals of March

Indian Festivals of March: A Journey Through Colors, Culture, and Culinary Delights

March in India is a month brimming with colors, spirituality, and celebrations, reflecting the rich tapestry of Indian culture and tradition. Each festival, with its unique history, customs, and foods, offers a glimpse into India's diverse cultural ethos and communal harmony. This article takes you on a journey through the most celebrated March Indian festivals, highlighting their significance, traditions, and the vibrancy they bring to the Indian subcontinent.

International Women's Day:

International Women's Day
International Women's Day
  • International Women's Day, celebrated on March 8th every year, is a global day acknowledging the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. It also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity. The day brings attention to issues such as gender equality, reproductive rights, and violence and abuse against women. It has been observed since the early 1900s, a time of great expansion and turbulence in the industrialized world that saw booming population growth and the rise of radical ideologies. International Women's Day is not only a day to celebrate the achievements of women but also a reminder of the ongoing struggle for equality and the need to continue pushing for progress.

Holi: The Festival of Colors

Holi:The Festival of Colors
Holi:The Festival of Colors
  • Holi, celebrated with fervor across India, marks the arrival of spring and the victory of good over evil. This festival is synonymous with vibrant colors, water balloons, and joyous gatherings. It originates from ancient Hindu mythology, commemorating the divine love of Radha and Krishna as well as the burning of the demoness Holika. The eve of Holi sees large bonfires lit, symbolizing the burning away of evil spirits. The day of Holi is a spectacle of colors, with people smearing each other with gulal (colored powder) and drenching one another with water. Special foods like gujiya, thandai, and dahi bhalla become the flavors of the season, while Bollywood songs add rhythm to the celebrations.

Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu Jayanti :

  • Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu Jayanti commemorates the birth anniversary of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, a 15th-century saint and founder of the Gaudiya Vaishnavism tradition in India. Born in Nabadwip, West Bengal, in 1486, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is revered as a divine incarnation by his followers. He propagated the worship of Lord Krishna and the concept of Sankirtan, or congregational chanting of the holy names of God, as a means to attain spiritual enlightenment. His teachings emphasized love and devotion to God, and unity among all beings. Celebrated with great fervor, the festival involves singing hymns, dancing, and feasting, reflecting his message of love, compassion, and devotion.

Good Friday:

  • Good Friday is a crucial day within Christianity, observed to commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death at Calvary. It is a day of mourning and solemn reflection for Christians around the world, marking a pivotal moment in Christian theology concerning Jesus's sacrifice for humanity's sins. Falling on the Friday before Easter Sunday, it is part of Holy Week, which also includes Maundy Thursday (the Last Supper) and Easter Sunday (celebrating Jesus's resurrection). On this day, many Christians attend church services, engage in fasting, and participate in processions to honor the suffering and sacrifice of Jesus, reflecting on the themes of redemption and forgiveness.


  • Easter, a cornerstone of Christian faith, commemorates the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, described in the New Testament as occurring on the third day after his crucifixion. It concludes the "Passion of Christ," a series of events and holidays beginning with Lent—a 40-day period of fasting, prayer, and penance—and culminating in Holy Week, which includes Good Friday, the day of Jesus' crucifixion. Celebrated on a Sunday between March 22 and April 25, Easter symbolizes hope, renewal, and new life. Traditions include attending sunrise services, decorating Easter eggs, and sharing meals with family. It's a time of joy and reflection for millions around the world.

Maha Shivaratri: The Night of Shiva:

  • Falling in March, Maha Shivaratri is a solemn festival honoring Lord Shiva. Devotees observe fasts, perform night-long vigils, and offer special prayers to Shiva lingams in temples. The festival symbolizes the overcoming of darkness and ignorance. In states like Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, processions fill the streets, while in southern India, devotees visit major Shiva temples like those in Varanasi and Somanathapura.

Shaheed Diwas:

  • Shaheed Diwas, or Martyrs' Day, is observed in India to honor the bravery and sacrifice of those who gave their lives for the country's freedom and dignity. The day is marked on March 23rd, commemorating the execution of Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev Thapar, and Shivaram Rajguru in 1931. These young freedom fighters were hanged by the British colonial government for their involvement in the struggle against British rule. Shaheed Diwas serves as a solemn reminder of the courage and patriotism of these martyrs and inspires people to remember and value the sacrifices made for India's independence.

Parsi New Year:

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  • Parsi New Year, also known as Navroz (Nowruz), is a significant festival celebrated by the Parsi community to mark the beginning of the new Iranian calendar year. Rooted in Zoroastrianism, one of the world's oldest monotheistic religions, this day symbolizes renewal, righteousness, and the rebirth of nature. Falling typically on March 21st, coinciding with the vernal equinox, the celebration is rich with cultural rituals, including house cleaning (Khouneh Tekouni), setting decorative tables (Haft-Seen), and preparing festive meals. It's a time of joy, where families gather, exchange gifts, and pray for prosperity, signifying the spirit of new beginnings and the spreading of peace and love.

Ramakrishna Jayanti:

  • Ramakrishna Jayanti marks the birth anniversary of Shri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, a 19th-century saint and spiritual leader in India. Born on February 18, 1836, in Kamarpukur, West Bengal, his teachings and life have inspired millions around the world. Ramakrishna emphasized the unity of God, advocating that all religions lead to the same divine goal. His universal message of divine love and social harmony continues to resonate, emphasizing the importance of personal spiritual realization and the harmony of all religions. Celebrated with great fervor, devotees engage in spiritual discourses, prayer, meditation, and rituals to honor his legacy, reflecting his teachings of love, compassion, and unity.

Maharshi Dayanand Saraswati:

  • Maharshi Dayanand Saraswati was a prominent Hindu religious leader and the founder of the Arya Samaj, a Hindu reform movement, in 1875. Born on February 12, 1824, in Gujarat, he was a sannyasi who emphasized the authority of the Vedas as the essential scriptures of Hinduism, advocating for the return to Vedic traditions and rituals. Dayanand's teachings promoted social reforms, including the abolition of caste discrimination, child marriage, and the encouragement of women's education. He was a staunch critic of idol worship and ritualistic practices prevalent in 19th-century Hindu society. His call for spiritual purification and social reform had a significant impact on Indian society and contributed to the national movement for independence


  • March in India is a month that showcases the country's cultural diversity and rich heritage through its festivals. From the color-drenched joy of Holi to the solemn reverence of Maha Shivaratri, each festival brings its own unique flavor and set of traditions. These celebrations not only offer a glimpse into India's multifaceted culture but also bring communities together, fostering unity and harmony. As India continues to modernize, the essence of these March festivals remains a testament to the enduring strength and vibrancy of Indian traditions, bridging the past and present in colorful, joyous celebration.


What is unique about Holi celebrations in India?

  • Holi's uniqueness lies in its celebration of colors, unity, and the embrace of life's different flavors, symbolized through traditional foods and communal gatherings.

Why do people fast during Maha Shivaratri?

  • Fasting during Maha Shivaratri is a mark of devotion to Lord Shiva, believed to cleanse sins and aid in the attainment of moksha (liberation).

How is Ugadi celebrated?

  • Ugadi is celebrated by preparing a special dish that symbolizes life's diverse flavors, decorating homes, and welcoming the New Year with positivity and prayers.

What does the Gudi symbolize in Gudi Padwa?

  • The Gudi symbolizes victory, prosperity, and the triumph of good over evil, inspired by historical victories and mythological events.

Can non-Parsis celebrate Navroz?

  • Yes, Navroz is a cultural celebration that welcomes participation from anyone interested in experiencing Parsi traditions and cuisine.

How is Ram Navami related to Chaitra Navratri?

  • Ram Navami falls on the ninth day of Chaitra Navratri, concluding the festival with celebrations of Lord Rama's birth.

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