Every season in Uttarakhand brings a new festival, one such is Harela. Harela falls in a month of Shravan and is popular especially in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand. The festival is associated with the change in the season which is coming of Moonsoon in the state.
Traditional Festival ‘Harela’
The festival comes with some ritual where people celebrate it by sowing seven types of grains in a basket of ringal in the house which is worshiped every day by offering water and praying to God to maintain happiness, prosperity, and peace in the family. Therefore, this festival is also considered a symbol of prosperity and progress.
Symbol of faith
According to popular belief, the day also marks the religious celebration of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati’s wedding. The village communities make clay idols of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati and dye the idols with natural colors. These are known as Dikare or Dikars. The special thing about this festival is it comes three times in a whole year in different months (Chaitra, Shravan, and Ashadh) but Harela which falls on the first day of Sharavan month has the most importance because Lord Shiva is worshiped in the month of Shravan.
Symbol of nature promotion and conservation
Harela festival signifies the confluence of our culture and environment. The festival resonates the message of conserving our environment by planting trees. This is why many people follow the custom of planting trees, especially on this day.
Wishing everyone on Harela Tourism Minister Shri Satpal Maharaaz said, “Conservation and promotion of nature have been an important part of the tradition of Uttarakhand. Harela festival is a symbol of happiness, peace, and prosperity as well as a symbol of social harmony and cooperation. Therefore, on the occasion of the Harela festival, let us take a pledge to protect our environment and nature.”
Tourism Secretary Shri Dilip Jawalkar said, “Harela festival connects us with nature and environment. Uttarakhand follows the culture of protecting the environment which is why we should all be saviours of our environment and plant more trees.”