Public holidays in IndiaIndian holidays are extremely complex. Somehow and somewhere basically every day is a public holiday because every community can set its own days. Nationwide public holidays are just Republic Day, Independence Day and Mahatma Gandhi's birthday. All other holidays are only valid regionally or even only in certain religious denominations.
A special feature of Indian holidays is the orientation to the Hindu lunar calendar, which is unusual for us. Until 1957 there were even several dozen different calendars in India, which were only then combined. Because even the Hindu calendar is still calculated differently depending on the region, the dates cannot be determined exactly to the day in our Gregorian calendar.
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Non-movable holidaysNon-statutory holidays are written in gray.
|Jan. 1st||New Year's Day|
|Jan. 5th||Guru Govind Singh Jayanti|
|Jan. 26th||Day of the Republic|
|Jan. 31st||Me-dam-me-phi (Ancestor Festival of Ahom)|
|April 14th||Bengali New Year (Tripura + West Bengal only)|
|May 1st||Labor Day|
|May 7th||Birthday of Rabindra Nath Tagore|
|Aug. 15th||Independence Day|
|Oct. 2nd||Birthday of Mahatma Gandhi|
|Dec. 24th||Birthday of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad|
|Dec. 25th||Christian Christmas|
|Dec. 31st||New Year's Eve|
Moving Holidays in India
|Good Friday||April 15th||April 7th||March 29th||April 18th||April 3rd|
|Festival of breaking the fast||May 2nd||April 21st||April 9th||March 30th||March 19th|
|Mother's Day||May 8th||May 14th||May 12th||May 11th||May 10th|
|Father's Day||June 19th||June 18th||June 16th||June 15th||June 21st|
|Festival of Sacrifice||July 9th||June 28th||June 16th||June 6th||May 26th|
|Awal Muharram (Islamic New Year)||July 29th||July 18th||July 7th||June 26th||June 16th|
|Diwali (Hindu festival of lights)||Oct. 24th||Nov. 12th||Nov. 1st||Oct. 21st||Nov. 8th|
Movable holidays with (so far and for us) uncalculatable dates:
|Vasant Panchami||5th day of the Hindu month Magha, January/February|
|Makar Sankranti / Pongal||January Solstice|
|Spring Festival Holi||1st full moon day of Hindu month Phalgun, February/March|
|Shiva's Big Night||13th day of Hindu month Phalgun, February/March|
|Ugadi||1st new moon after the equinox in spring|
|Rama Navami (Rama's Birthday)||9th day of Hindu month Chaitra, March/April|
|Mahavir Jayanti||13th day of the waxing moon in the Hindu month of Chaitra, March/April|
|Birthday of Buddha||Full moon day of the Hindu month Vaisakh|
|Raksha Bandhan||Full moon day of Hindu month Shravana, August|
|Janmashtami, birth of the god Krishna||8th day of Hindu month Shravan, August/September|
|Birth of the God Ganesh||4th day of the waxing moon in the Hindu month of Bhaadrapada, August / September|
|Ganesh Chaturthi||4th day of Hindu month Bhadrapad, September|
|Dashahara||Day 10 of the moonlit half of the Hindu month of Ashvayuja|
|Birthday of Guru Nanak Dev||Full moon in the Hindu month Kartik|
Probably the most important secular holiday in the Indian calendar is the national holiday - the day of the republic on January 26. The occasion is the entry into force of the constitution in 1950, and on this date the capital celebrates with a big parade. The birthday of Mahatma Gandhi on October 2 is also celebrated nationwide.
In addition, there are numerous Hindu holidays, but none of them is also anchored nationwide as a public holiday. Nevertheless, they are mostly celebrated nationwide and in most regions of India these are also days off from work. Due to the Hindu and therefore polytheistic belief of the majority of the population, there are numerous peculiarities and different holidays in the respective religious forms.
First and foremost in its importance is the festival of lights Diwali. The light triumphs as good over the darkness - the evil. With this extremely rough description, the similarities almost end. The characteristics and interpretations are different in the whole country. In many regions of the south, the victory of Krishna over Naraka is at stake, while most northern inhabitants tend to associate the day with the exile of the god Rama.
Among Indian Muslims, the festival of sacrifice (al-Adha) and the end of Lent (al-Fitre) are the most prominent. For the few Christians in the country, Easter and Christmas are also celebrated. In addition, there are some less common holidays from the most diverse religions in the diverse India.