Maharashtra Day is a state holiday in the Indian state of Maharashtra and commemorates the formation of the state. It is a holiday that’s been celebrated since May of 1960 and on this day there is often a variety of different political speeches, exhibitions, ceremonies and parades that one can find in the public areas of the city and that is just what can be seen in public.
Privately, people and institutions will often celebrate the history and the traditions of this day in their own individual way. This holiday is celebrated on May 1st in Maharashtra.
History of Maharashtra Day
In 1956, the States Reorganization Act was enacted which defined Indian state boundaries according to language. However, when this act was enacted, it created the State of Bombay which then had a number of different languages being spoken in the same geographical area. Some of these languages included Kutchi, Konkani, Gujarati, and Marathi.
However, the Sanyukta Maharashtra Samiti demanded the creation of a state in which most of the people spoke Marathi and Konkani and another state in which people spoke Gujarati and Kutchi. This resulted in the Bombay Reorganization Act being proposed and eventually enacted on April 25th of 1960. It officially took effect on May 1st of that year.
Maharashtra Day Customs & Celebrations
On this day, a variety of different celebrations take place. For instance, every year there is usually a formal announcement of Maharashtra Day being a public holiday by the Government of Maharashtra. Therefore, usually many businesses and governmental offices are closed on this day. Schools are also usually closed for summer vacation by this time and banks are as well.
Usually, there is some form of parade at Shivaji Park in Dadar. This parade will be headed by the State Governor and will usually contain a variety of different military and civil units which may include the Mumbai Police, the state reserve, and the BMC Force. The Flag of Maharashtra is raised at the district headquarters at dawn and many notable people from all walks of life are given awards on this day. This includes doctors, police officers, and scientists.
All over the state, private celebrations take place. These include traditional Lezim performances, poetry readings, and folk songs. Many people at these events are dressed in traditional Maharashtrian clothing but there are some people who will dress in more modern attire.