Basant Panchami according to our tradition is a spring season. The word "Basant Panchami" is derived from the two letters firstly Basant means spring and Panchami mean the fifth day according to Sanskrit". Traditionally, this festival is celebrated across the length and breadth of our country. This festival not only in India but in our subcontinent is celebrated. This festival is also associated with kite flying.
Usually, Basant Panchami is celebrated during the first day of the spring, the fifth day (Panchami) of the Hindu calendar Magh (it starts from January till the middle of February). Though it is not a national holiday but is very popular in North India and East India. According to our culture and mythology as found in many of our religious books on this very auspicious day the goddess of learning (Maa Saraswati) personally visits eath and graces its devotees with knowledge, wisdom and removes darkness from ignorant and illiterate people. By getting grace from the goddess, men and women become positive by nature and leave their negativity behind them. The grace that is given by the goddess usually lasts for the year.
HINDU TRADITION -- On this day of Basant Panchami every one gets up early, cleans houses, offices or another place of their work. Next, after bathing and cleaning every person dresses in yellow colour, add on yellow turmeric on their foreheads. On this day prayers, hymns are sung in the praise of Goddess Saraswati, Goddess Earth, Sun God. On this day many devotees keep fast for one day. After performing prayers the food that is consumed is of yellow colour. Kesar is added to the food that is consumed along with the yellow coloured sweets like Boondi Ladoos, Kesar halwa, Rajbhog is also served to the goddess as she really adored this sweet.
On this day during the old day's many schools, colleges and other educational institutes used to keep quiz, essay and other educational competitions and on this very particular day the prize distribution used to take place. But now also many traditional education institutes perform Saraswati Puja in their premises.
Agriculture Value. This day of Basant Panchami has an agriculture value or essence. On this, the day the Mustard which is used very widely in different forms starts turning into a yellow colour. In other words, the seeds that have been sown starts blooming or many pulses etc starts ripening after a very harsh cold climate. When the yellow colour comes on the crops it brings smiles on farmers who have really worked hard for his crops.
This day also brings the significance of kite flying. All the regions have a different tale to tell. But the way the sky is covered with different types and shapes of kites is a scene that can never be forgotten. The scene in the sky with crystal blue in the background with colour full kites makes it more panoramic. Earlier on the kite flying was restricted till Western India but across the borders, kite flying is done and in some places, the competitions are also held.
Lastly, this festival still has its significance and it holds true even today. It is so that after dark harsh cold winter weather the warmness of sun comes again which is yellowish in colour and it gives to multiple plants and animals which starts growing in a significant manner. And if we correlate with this to human beings after the darkness of ignorance over a period of time knowledge comes back which is white in colour along with the yellow colour.
There is a traditional old age saying in Rural Country which is AYI BASANT RITU PALA UDANT. It means with an offset of the spring season, winter bids adieu.