Bhai Duj, time to celebrate brother-sister bond

November 7th, 2010 - 1:50 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi/Mathura, Nov 7 (IANS) In a perfect ringing down of the curtain to the festive season, Bhai Duj was celebrated in parts of India Sunday. Spanning nearly a month, the festivities start with Navratra and Durga Puja and end with a celebration of the brother-sister bond.

Known as Bhai Ponta in the eastern part of the country, Bhai Duj is celebrated on the second day after the moonless night of Diwali.

Sisters put vermilion on the forehead of their brothers and perform their ‘aarti’ with diyas, praying that they be always protected from evil forces.

“This is a much-awaited day for sisters, apart from Rakhi. I cook my brother’s favourite dishes and have sweets. The entire family gathers for the celebrations,” said Disha Tripathi, a student of Delhi University.

It is not just excitement among the sisters, brothers too look forward to this day.

Said Angad Saxena, an IT employee in the capital: “Bhaiyya Duj adds to the fun of brother-sister fights. And we brothers get to have good food cooked by our sisters, besides the traditional festivities.”

In helping to make the celebrations a happier occasion for sisters, the Delhi Transport Corporation decided not to charge women passengers any fare in the buses.

Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) is providing 453 extra trips Sunday on all lines, as the inter-city network expected extra rush on the festive occasion.

According to mythology, Yamaraj, the lord of death and the custodian of hell, on this day visits his sister Yami, who puts the auspicious mark on his forehead and prays for his well-being.

In Uttar Pradesh’s Mathura, thousands of devotees from all parts of India and many NRIs too, took a holy dip at Vishram Ghat, opposite the famous Dwarkadheesh temple.

It is believed that if a brother takes a holy dip in the Yamuna with his sister, the god of death Yamaraj would be immensely pleased.

It is also believed that there is only one temple of Dharam Raj (Yamaraj) in the whole of India, at the Vishram Ghat in Mathura.

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