Derived from the words “Yuga” which means age and “Adi” which means thebeginning of a new age, the festival of Ugadi is celebrated as the New Year’s Day by the Hindus in the regions of Karnataka, Telangana, Maharashtra, and Andhra Pradesh. It is generally celebrated in the month of March to April and is known by different names in different parts of the country.For example, Ugadi is known as Yugadi in Karnataka and Gudi Padwa in the state of Maharashtra. Not only in India, this day is also celebrated by the Hindus of Bali and Indonesia as “Nyepi.”
As legend has it, it was on this day that the creator of the universe, Lord Brahma, started creating the universe. The day is celebrated with great pomp and show in various regions of India. The preparations of Ugadi begin a week earlier when people clean their house completely.A major part of the celebrations includes drawing Kolam-Rangoli on the floor of the house, buying new clothes, and visiting temples. Besides, the entrance of the house is decorated with fresh mango leaves. The festival is considered incomplete without the special dish that is prepared for the occasion. Some notable dishes cooked and prepared to mark the celebrations of Ugadi are Pulihora, Bobbatlu, Burelu, as well as the famous Pachadi.
Pachadi is not only a famous dish prepared for the occasion, but its sweet, bitter, sour, and tangy taste hold great significance. It stands for the fact that one should be prepared for not just the sweet experiences, but also sour, tangy, and bitter moments in the year that will follow. Finally, another important part of the celebrations during Ugadi include the reading of Panchangam by the eldest member of the family. Sometimes this can even be done by a priest where predictions are made for the upcoming year following the signs of the moon.