The Magh Bihu festival of Assam is celebrated with great fervor by its entire populace. Characterized by merry making and feasting, this festival marks the end of the harvesting season when there is abundance of everything. This is the time when the hard working agricultural folk of the state sit down to reap the benefits of their labor. However, it must be pointed out that the Magh Bihu festival is not limited to the agricultural pockets of the state. Right from the smallest of villages to the big towns and cities of Assam, people celebrate this festival with great joy, though it must be mentioned that the mode of celebration differs from the villages to the cities.
The Magh Bihu is also referred to as Bhogali Bihu or the festival of food and is celebrated in the month of January. It is the time when winter sets out on its last course, making way for spring. The night before Magh Bihu Festival is called Uruka and is characterized by loads of merry making and community feasts. However, many of the religious minded folks of Assam choose to fast and pray on this night.
On Magh Bihu, people rise early in the morning and set fire to "mejis" that are temporary pavilions made of wood, bamboo and hay. After the burning of mejis, people sit down to enjoy their fill of traditional Assamese fare. In the villages, people can also witness some interesting bullfights and bird fights. Dance and music also become the order of the day as the day wears on. People also visit the homes of their friends and relatives to exchange pleasantries on the occasion of Bihu.
The Magh Bihu Festival of Assam is an occasion when all differences are forgotten and people unite to celebrate in a pompous manner. If you travel to Assam during this time, make sure that you are a part of the celebrations.