While Hindi is the official language, Urdu is an additional language. Bengali, Nepali, Punjabi and several important regional languages such as Awadhi, Bhojpuri, Braj, Bagheli, Bundeli and Khari-boli are spoken in the State besides several local dialects that do not have a formal name.



  • The people of Uttar Pradesh wear a variety of traditional and Western-style dresses.
  • Traditional dresses include colourful draped garments—such as saree for women and dhoti or lungi for men—and tailored clothes such as salwar kameez for women and kurtapyjama for men.
  • Men also often sport a headgear like topi or pagri. Sherwani and Achkan are more formal dresses for men and are frequently worn along with chooridar on fes5ve occasions.
  • Western-style trousers and shirts are also common among the men.

Western-style trousers and shirts are also common among the men.


  • The food special5es in Uttar Pradesh are wide, ranging in variety, taste and flavour.
  • Different ci5es have their own styles of preparing the strong flavoured food items with exotic gravies.
  • Puri-Aloo, Kachori, Nimona, Baa? Chokha, Tehri, Kadhi Chawal, etc., are among the popular vegetarian dishes.
  • The chaat, samosa and pakora are among the most famous snacks in the region.
  • Meat delicacies and Biryanis (rice prepara5ons) of Awadh are world famous. An interesting type of cooking in Awadh is ‘Dum Pukht’, in which the food is sealed and cooked in a mud pot called ‘handi’.
  • The tradi5onal desserts popular here are Balushahi, Barfi, Chhena, Gujhia, Halwa, Imar?, Jalebi, Kalakand, Launglata, Rabri, Petha, Rasmalai, Tasmai, Malpua, etc. Sharbats (juice) are also very popular in Uttar Pradesh.
  • There are many types of Sharbats used here like bel sharbat, Lemon sharbat, rose sharbat

Dum pukht       jalebi



  • Prepared with groundnut and jaggery
  • Proteins (groundnut), iron (jaggery)
  • Recharges body glucose + releases energy instantly


  • Made from raw green mangoes and jaggery
  • Consumed during hot summer season when mangoes are in season
  • Keeps the body warm; Provide energy


  • Good method for preserving vegetables, fruits and meat
  • Salt is used in dry and brine form
  • Prevents growth of food borne pathogens
  • Binds with water molecules and acts as a dehydrating agent
  • When salt applied item is dried in the sun, the salt tolerant bacteria present naturally on the surface absorbs the sucrose from the fruit or vegetable and release by-productslike CO2, acetic acid and lactic acid


  • Earthen pot used for collecting waste and leftover food
  • Water in it is used for washing hands and dishes



  • Various pilgrimage sites are situated along the River Ganga, which are the hubs of fairs, festivals and worship by millions of Hindus every year.
  • Ten days in the month of Jyeshtha (June), Ganga Dussehra is celebrated at Garhmukteshwar, Prayag and Varanasi.
  • Devotees take a holy dip in the Ganga, worship it, collect the clay from the banks/ Ghats and take it home.
  • Thousands of lamps are floated into the Ganga aarti At the dusk.
  • Traditionally , Kumbh fairs is a widely recognised as the Melas, held at four places: the Haridwar Kumbh Mela, the Allahabad Kumbh Mela, the Nashik- Trimbakeshwar Simhastha and Ujjain Simhastha.
  • These four fairs are held periodically at one of these places by rotation.
  • The Kumbh Mela is held since ancient times every 12 years at Triveni Sangam, the meeting points of three rivers: the Ganga, the Yamuna and the mythical Saraswati at Prayag (Allahabad).
  • There are many other festivals which are celebrated throughout the year and most of them are common and religious practices are as much an integral part of everyday life.
  • Among the most important Hindu festival are Diwali, Holi, Dussehra, and Raksha-Bandhan.
  • Also, there are places which are specifically identified with some of these festivals .
  • Durga puja is observed in many parts of the State during Navratri.
  • Bārah Wafat, Eid, Bakrid and Birthday of Imam Ali ibn Abitalib are recognised official Muslim religious festival .
  • Muharram, the day of Ashura is an official holiday but Shiites consider it as a day of mourning and not a festival .
  • Mahavir Jayanti is celebrated by Jains, Buddha Jayanti by Buddhists, Guru Nanak Jayati by Sikhs and Christmas by the Christians.
  • Other festivals include Ram Navami, Chhath Puja, Janmashtami, Mahashivratri, Holi and Janmashtami associated with Lord Krishna are celebrated with great fervour in Mathura and other parts of the State.
  • During Holi, festival start by offering colours to the Lord at the temples before it is celebrated on the streets.
  • Artists from various parts of the country gather here to perform raas leela, or divine dance recitals by Krishna’s devotees. Gayan mandalis or singing troupes that render folk songs particularly associated with Holi, flock to this Janmashtami is celebrated on the day when Krishna was born. Idols of Krishna and Radha are decorated and then worshipped.



  • Marks the celebration of onset of spring
  • Dedicated to Goddess Saraswati
  • Yellowis a colour significantly used during Basant Panchami as mustard Fields bloom North India

Yellowis a colour significantly used during Basant Panchami as mustard Fields bloom North India



  • Char Bayt is a Muslim tradition in local oral poetry in Tonk in the State of Rajasthan, Bhopalin the State of Madhya Pradesh, and Rampur, Chandpur, Malihabad and Amroha in the State of Uttar Pradesh, India.
  • Chaar Bayt arefour line sequence of verse sung to the beat of the “duff” (a percussion instrument). The poetry has originated from An Arabic poetic form called “Rajeez” and can be traced back to the 7th Century.

This is a very participative and lyrical form of poetry which is also performed in a collective. Often there is a troupe with headednby an ‘ustad’. The singers who perform chaar Bayt are often illiterate and come from economically weaker sections of the society



  • The mela is especially renowned for the presence of an extraordinary array of religious ascetics – sadhus and mahants – enticed from remote hideaways in forests, mountains and Once astrologers have determined the propitious bathing time or Kumbhayog, the first to hit the water is by legions of Naga Sadhus or Naga Babas, who cover their naked bodies with ash and wear hair in long dreadlocks. The sadhus, who see themselves as guardians of the faith, approach the confluence at the scheduled time with all the pomp and bravado of a charging army. The most recent Maha Kumbh Mela was held in 2013 and the next is due in 2025.
  • 25 crore to 3.5 million people attend kumbh mela
यथा सुराणाां अमृतां प्रवीणाां जलां स्वधा ।सुधा यथा च नागानाां तथा गांगा जलां नृणाम ।।
यथा सुराणाां अमृतां प्रवीणाां जलां स्वधा ।
सुधा यथा च नागानाां तथा गांगा जलां नृणाम ।।


The Samudra Manthan & the struggle between Gods and Demons for Amrit signifies the struggle between knowledge – wisdom and ignorance, meaning when control over the pancha gyanaendriya, the pancha Karmendriyas is achieved, the Nectar begins to emanate in the human body called Ghat/ Kumbh.

Samudra Manthan Prayag
Samudra Manthan Prayag


An intangible religious heritage of the Hindus, the 48 days Kumbh Parva is the largest human gathering on earth when The Hindu saints and millions of devotees from around the world gather at the banks of Ganga ji to celebrate the coming together of the earth, moon and Jupiter.

The spiritual hunger of a people, the strength of Sanatan Samskriti, the collective intense longing of an entire population for liberation that reflects in the Kumbh mela is practically impossible to capture in words, film or print.

The gathering that dissolves all distinctions of urban-rural, caste-class, rich and poor becoming one to soak in the nectar of immortality, the ever flowing Ganga is a spectacle to be experienced. The oneness of the massive Hindu society and its unfathomable faith in Sanatana Dharma has to be seen to be believed.

Tents at Prayag 2019
Tents at Prayag 2019


The Story Of Kumbh Parva

The ancient origin of the Kumbh Mela is described in the Vedic Scriptures as being evolved from days of the time when the Khsheer Sagar was churned over 12 days by Gods (12 years in human time, theory of Relativity – time runs differently in different realm of existence, E=mc2) with the Meru Mountain as the churning rod, the king of serpents Vasuki as the rope around it. On the 6th day of the Samudra Manthan, drops of elixir fell into the Ganga at Haridwar, on the 9th day the ethereal subtle drops merged into the holy waters of the Triveni Sangam of Ganga, Jamuna and Saraswati at Prayag and on the 12th day in Godavari in Nashik and in Kshipra at Ujjain.


As per Rig Veda:

ससताससते सररते यत्र सङ्गते तत्राप्लुतासो सिवमुत्पतन्ति ।ये वै तन्वां सवसृजन्ति धीरास्ते जनासो अमृतत्वां भजिे ॥ – Rigveda, Khilsukta

He who bathes at the sangam attains Heaven, the courageous individuals who purifies their body in this confluence attain moksha.


The Science Behind The Years Old Belief Of The Hindus

Different planets take different amount of time to complete one revolution around the sun. Jupiter moves from Aquarius, Taurus, Scorpio and Leo. When it enters Aquarius (Aquarius- a pot pouring elixir on earth) the Kumbh mela is held and when it enters other constellations Ardh Kumbh Melas take place.

Jupiter rotates after every half an hour at a slow speed absorbing lesser energy from the sun and releasing more, the place where it resides is destroyed but the place at which it is directed flourishes. Jupiter takes 3 earth years to move from one constellation to other & takes eleven years, ten months and fourteen days to complete its revolution around the Sun. Hence the Purna Kumbha occurs once in every twelve years.

The position of Sun, Moon and Jupiter in different astrological signs determine the site at which Kumbh will be held.

पसिनी नायके  मेषे कु म्भ रासि गते गुरोोः  । गांगा द्वारे भवेि योगोः  कु म्भ नामा तथोत्तमाोः ।।

When the Sun and Moon in Aries and Sagittarius respectively and Jupiter is in Aquarius during the Hindu month of Chaitra, Kumbh is held at Haridwar.

मकरे च सिवा नाथे ह्मजगें च बृहस्पतौ कु म्भ योगोभवेत्तत्र प्रयागे ह्यसत िू लभभ:” मेष रासि गते जीवे मकरे चन्द्र भास्करौ । अमावस्या तिा योगोः  कु म्भख्यस्तीथभ नायके  ।।

When the sun and the moon are in Capricorn and Jupiter is in Vrishabha/ Taurus during the Hindu month of Magha, the kumbh happens at Prayag.

ससांह रासि गते सूये ससांह रािौ बृहस्पतौ । गोिावयाभ भवेत कु म्भोां जायते खलु मुन्तििोः  ।।

When the Jupiter enters in Simha / Leo and the Sun and Moon in Cancer, the Kumbha is held at Nashik and Trimbakeshwar.

मेष रासि गते सूये ससांह रािौ बृहस्पतौ । उन्तियन्ाां भवेत कु म्भोः  सिामुन्ति प्रिायकोः  ।।

When Jupiter is in Leo and the Sun and Moon in Aries, the Kumbha is held at Ujjain.

Ardh-Kumbh happens once in every 6 years in rotation at Allahabad, Haridwar, Ujjain and Nasik. Poorna-Kumbh happens once in every 12 years in rotation at Allahabad, Haridwar, Ujjain, Nasik. Maha-Kumbh happens once in every 144 years at Prayag.


Why prayag?

Prayag is one of the three pilgrimage places besides Kashi and Gaya.

Of the five Yagna Vedis, Kurukshetra, Gaya, Viraj, Pushkar and Prayag, Prayag is the Madhya Vedi.

Prayag is called the ‘Akshaya Kshetra’, meaning when the entire world will be submerged at the time of Pralaya, Shri Vishnu will sleep on the Akshayavata, the abode of all Deities. All the Gods, sages and spiritually evolved individuals will reside here and protect the place.

सत्रवेणीà- ‚ माधवां सोमां भरद्वाजां च वासुसकम् ।

वन्देऽक्ष- यवटां िेषां प्रयागां तीथभनायकम- ॥

I revere Triveni Sangam, Venimadhav, Someshwar, Bhardwaj, Vasuki Akshayavat, Shesha and Prayag, the king of pilgrimages.

Located on the sacred Triveni Sangam, where Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati meet, Prayag is also called Prajapatikshetra and Tirthraj. After receiving the lost four Vedas Prajapati Brahma performed his first Yagna here. Pra, a prefix and the root Yaj means Yagna.


नमस्ते वृक्ष राजाय ब्रह्ममां, सवष्णु सिवात्मक। सप्त पाताल सांस्थाम सवसचत्र फल िासयने।। नमो भेषज रूपाय मायायाोः पतये नमोः । माधवस्य जलक्रीड़ा लोल पल्लव काररणे।। प्रपांच बीज भूताय सवसचत्र फलिाय च।। नमस्तुभ्यां नमस्तुभ्यां नमस्तुभ्यां नमो नमोः ।।

Being the ‘Swaroop’ of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh, those sacrificing their body near the sacred ancient Akshayavat whose roots go deep till Patal, attain Moksha, say the Vayu, Matsya, Kurma, Padma, Agni and Skanda Puranas.

To smash the Hindu religious beliefs and practices, Akbar in 1575-84, destroyed the Akshayavat and the Mandirs around it and built Rani mahal over it, renaming Prayag as Ilahabas (changed to Allahabad by Shah Jahan) but the Akshaywat grew again. Jahangir set it on fire, placed hot iron plates over it to destroy its roots but the Akshayavat grew again into a giant tree standing tall with pride in Akbar’s fort on the banks of Yamuna.

placed hot iron plates over it to destroy its roots but the Akshayavat grew again

Mughals then banned its darshan, the English continued with the ban. After Independence, its darshans were permitted only with prior permission from Commandant of Allahabad Fort’s Ordinance Depot. In December 2018, Prime Minister Narendra Modi opened for year round darshan the Akshayavat, Patalpuri Temple and Saraswati Koop – source of the river Saraswati.


The Astrological Significance

The ancient Rishis like Garga Muni, Aryabhatt, Kapila, Varahimira, Hayagreeva laid down theories on planetary positions, eclipses, cosmography, law of gravity and astronomical equipment.

The Sun-Spot cycle enhances the electro-magnetic field of the earth effecting the environment, water, air and the electro-magnetic field of the human body producing effects on the nervous, endocrine, circulatory and the respiratory system similar to that in meditation.

In each universe, there are 14 planetary systems consisting of the three Lokas. These three lokas are: Urdhva-loka, Madhya or Bhu-loka, Adho-loka.

These Lokas/ planets exist within the material world, earth being in the middle of these planetary systems, symbolizes the mortal realms known as Bhu Mandala. Development of higher consciousness/ enlightenment starts with human beings. We attains the higher lokas based on our spiritual evolvement/ enlightenment or lower lokas because of our wrong deeds.

Nakshtara-Loka/ Lagoon Nebula, located near the major neighbourhood of the Solar System, seen as the starry sky at night, represents the Zodiac Map around the Earth.

Position of the planets inside this Nakshatra lokas play an important role in determining the incidents and future of an individual.

“The sun revolves at the speed of 16,000 miles per second around the Dhruvaloka/ Galactic core, there is an area of an immense gravitational power and energy all around which is the connecting point between the Physical and Spiritual Realms”. – Srimad Bhagvat.

Modern science calls these powerful areas of gravitational force, the black holes.

Dhruv-Loka at the center, surrounded by a ring of stars, the complex planetary revolving around the Dhruv Tara/ Polestar, is said to exist some 10,000,000 miles below the Maharloka.

*So, this bright ring of stars as our galaxy Milky Way is the Vaikuntha, the abode of Lord Ksirodakasayi Vishnu and all the objects attracted by black holes reach the abode of Vishnu ji!

Holy Waters at Prayag 2019
Holy Waters at Prayag 2019

The Miraculous Holy Waters And Their Changing Molecular Structure

“Every living being is made up of water and minerals, so is the planet. Positive thoughts can harmonise related things. Prayers make water create beautiful hexagonal water crystals, negative ones create ugly looking water crystals, opposite vibration can be added to the water and by drinking that water, the negative feeling will go away”. – Dr Masaru Emoto

Ganga is deeply connected to the collective consciousness of Hindus and is contained with their immense love and gratitude. The self-purifying quality of the Ganga water have extraordinary ability to retain oxygen levels, 25 times higher than any other river in the world.

Water being the quickest element to be energized, changes its molecular structure with the changing solar magnetic activity. The secret Moksha at the Kumbh lies in the Cosmic Energy, merging into the Triveni Sangam spreading to a radius of 45kms. The human body absorb these Energies that bring about changes in the mind and body helping in further evolution or liberation of the soul.

At Haridwar, this Cosmic Energy gushes in the Ganga at the point of Har-ki-Pauri, At Ujjain in the centre-point of Shipra adjoining to the Mahakaaleshwar, at Nasik in the Godavari at the point that flows by Triyambhakeshwar.

Naga Sadhu
Naga Sadhu

Fortunate are those 

‘It is extremely rare to have the privilege of a Holy bath in Prayag in the month of Magha’. – Padmapurana.

‘A holy bath every day at Prayag is equivalent to the benefit obtained by donating millions of cows.’ – Agnipurana.

‘It is equal to performing Ashwamedha Yadnya.’ – Brahmapurana.

’It is equal to the pilgrimage to more than 100 crore shrines.’ -Matsyapurana.

‘Brahma Himself was unable to describe the benefits obtained by dean and a holy bath on Makar sankranti at Prayag.’ – Mahabharata.


Sadhus, The Centre Of Attraction

Sadhus of various Akahras, (Akhara, from akhand, meaning undistructable) are an integral part of the Kumbh Mela, who come out of their seclusion for pilgrims who seek their blessings & divine energy.

There are hundreds of different Hindu Sanyasi orders. The Sanyasis dedicate their lives to the pursuit of self-realization and renouncing of all possessions, take a vow of non-injury, truth, chastity and follow a strict discipline of overcoming anger, service and surrender to the Guru, alertness, cleanliness, wearing simplest unstitched clothes, sleeping on the ground and purity of food.According to some of our scriptures Sri Dattatreya founded Sannyasis Orders. According to some of our scriptures Sri Dattatreya founded Sannyasis Orders.

The Shaiva Akahras follow Shiva.

Vaishnava Akharas worship Vishnu

Udaseen Akharas Chandra Dev, the son of the first guru of the Sikhs is considered as the founder of the Udaseen Akhara.

Naga SadhusMore than a lakh Naga Sadhus from thirteen Akharas were the centre of attraction at the Kumbh 2019.
Naga Sadhus
More than a lakh Naga Sadhus from thirteen Akharas were the centre of attraction at the Kumbh 2019.


The Naga Sadhus – Naga in Sanskrit means mountain, people residing in and around mountains are known as Pahadi or Naga. Around 2500 years ago Adi Sankaracharya formed, ‘Shastra ki fauj’ and ‘Shastra ki fauj’, the order of Naga Sadhus to fight the invading Muslims and to protect the religion;

A warrior class, the Nagas were trained and divided like a regiment in an army and are ready to fight intellectually or wrestle anytime.

Most of the Nagas enter the orders at a very young age and live a life of celibacy for six years and after 12 years they are accepted as a Naga.’ – Naga Digambar Kedar Giri, Otherwise confined to their caves in Himalayas, only at the Kumbh the Sangam of the Naga sadhus can be seen meditating, transforming people and meeting each other.

In the honour of the protectors of Dharma, Nagas to take the first ‘Amrit Snan’ in Ganga ji became a traditional ritual at Kumbh.

Snan in Holy Waters
Snan in Holy Waters


Urdhwavahur Sadhus – undergo rigid spiritual practices.

Parivajakas – take a vow of silence & use bells to alert others to their presence.

Shirshasinsins – stand for 24 hours and meditate in headstand posture.

Dandi Bara/ Dandi sanyasis – carry wooden sticks called Bhramha Danda. It is said that Narayana himself was the first Dandi Sanyasi.

Acharya Bara – sect is also known as ‘Ramanuj Sect. The first Acharya of this sect was Shri Shathkop Swami of South India, a devotee of Shri Vishnu about 4,500 years ago.

Prayagwals – The descendents of Tirth Purohit of Raghukul in Treta Yug. In ancient times the huts of Prayagwals were the main residing place for pilgrims to Kumbh and the offerings received from the travelers was their source of living. Since then all religious rites of pilgrims at Prayag are conducted by them. The head Tirth Purrohits of every state live in Prayag.

Kalpvasis – live on the banks of Ganga throughout the Kumbh, meditating, performing rituals, bathing three times a day, control their senses and with a Sakshi bhaav, surrender themselves to Bhagwan Vishnu. According to Dharma Granths, Kalpvas satisfy our ancestors.

Pontoon Bridge
Pontoon Bridge

Highlights Of Kumbh Mela 2019

Unlike the earlier times when the area allocated to the Kumbh Mela used to be 15 to 17 kms, this time around the state government spread it over an area of 45 km; from 5,000 acres to 10,000 acres.

Tanneries in Kanpur and Unnao were closed from December 15, 2018, till March 15, 2019, to maintain the cleanliness of Ganga.

Largest temporary city in the world has been set up along Prayagraj, with 250-km long roads and 22 pontoon bridges.

More than 40,000 LED bulbs brighten the Kumbh Mela. ‘Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.’- UNESCO

Two ‘Integrated Control and Command Centres’ and the use of ‘artificial intelligence’ with over 1,000 CCTV cameras, Quad bikes for quick movement on the sand of the Sangam area, for better crowd management, safety and traffic movement control, was witnessed for the first time ever in a Kumbh Mela.

The Indian Railways ran 800 special trains to Prayagraj at Rs.5, Air India flew new flights. ‘Joyride’, helicopter service for a tour of Kumbh 2019 was an interesting addition.

Stalls playing videos of events at Kumbh 2019 with a VR headset for a virtual reality experience were set up.

Around 4000 high-speed Wi-Fi hotspots across the mela were set up. About 1,22,000 toilet were constructed and a lakh swachhagrahis deployed to look after the hygiene and cleanliness.

There were around 50 milk booths and 40 stalls in the food court area.

  • UNESCO listed Kumbh Mela on its list of ‘Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity’. Yoga was added on the list on December 1, 2016



Buddha Purnima festival is celebrated to mark the birth of Lord Buddha. Buddha Purnima or Buddha Jayanti is celebrated with traditional religious fervor. Buddha Purnima falls on the full moon day in the Hindu month of Vaisakh (April/May). Lord Buddha was born on the Full Moon day in the month of Vaisakh in 563 BC. Here, it is interesting to note that Buddha achieved enlightenment and nirvana (salvation) on the same day (the Full Moon day). Thus, Buddha Purnima also marks the death anniversary of Gautam Buddha. Sarnath holds an important place in Buddhism as Gautam Buddha gave his first sermon at Sarnath. On the occasion of Buddha Jayanti, a large fair is held at Sarnath and the relics of the Buddha are taken out for public display in a procession.

Besides Sarnath, the Buddha Purnima is also celebrated with religious fervor at Gaya and Kushinagar and other parts of India and the world. The Buddha Purnima celebrations at Sarnath attract large Buddhist crowds as Buddhists offer prayers in different Buddhist temples at Sarnath on this day. Prayers, sermons, and recitation of Buddhist scriptures are other important religious activities performed by the Buddhists at Sarnath. Monks and devotees meditate and worship the statue of Gautam Buddha. The Buddhist devotees also offer fruits, flowers, candles etc to statues of Lord Buddha.


Social Link – FacebookTwitter
Shaan Academy – Best Institute For IAS In Delhi


Get Updates by Subscribing Our Newsletter

Leave a Reply