For people living in Andhra Pradesh and Telugus all around the world, Ugadi is celebrated as the first day of the New Year. According to common belief, Ugadi is the day when Brahma started creating the world. It is also known as the Chaitra Suddhya Padhyami. The New Year also marks the onset of new life and freshness in the world of nature.
1. Ugadi Celebrations
A week before Ugadi, people clean and wash their houses. They purchase new clothes and other household articles at the beginning of the New Year. People start their day by waking early in the morning and decorate the entrance of their houses with fresh leaves of the mango tree. The ritualistic prayer is offered to the Gods for prosperity, success and wellbeing.
2. The Ugadi Feast
During the celebration of Ugadi, the market is flooded with jaggery made from freshly harvested sugarcane. This is used in cooking that gives the dishes a unique taste. The Ugadi Pachadi is a special dish especially to mark the commencement of the Telugu New Year. It is prepared with pieces of raw mango, mango flowers, jaggery and new tamarind. Other dishes that are prepared are Bhakshyalu (which tastes almost like Puran Poli) and obbattu. The usage of neem, green chilli, jaggery and salt mark both the ups and downs of which have to treated alike and accepted together throughout the year.
3. Ugadi Literary Meet
Scholars and lovers of poetry and literature meet in a place and recite poems. This is where food for thought is acquired equally acts as entertainment for the occasion.
4. Buying Gold
Buying gold jewellery is considered very auspicious on this day. People will be on a shopping spree this day. Jewellers plan their exhibition much in advance to display their new range of jewellery. Various schemes, discounts and offers are seen all over the city. People are seen wearing colourful dresses, and a spirit of giving is seen in every activity. This the time for people to come together to shop, eat and celebrate the festival.