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Indian Festival: Bhai Dooj (Bhai Duj) in 2012
Bhai Dooj: Bhai Dooj is celebrated on the second day after Diwali. Bhai Duj is a festival which brings the families closer. The way the Bhai duj is celebrated is very similar to that in Raksha Bandhan. Sister, on a thali keeps mithai, batashas, coconut and roli. The lamp is lit and is kept on the thali. After this puja is performed in the puja room generally by all the members of the family. After this the sisters put tilak on the forehead of their brother and offer sweets. Brother gives some gifts in return. Generally the sisters are offered sweets, clothes, utensils and various other gift items on the day.

Legends of Bhai Duj: There are various legend associated with the festival of bhai duj.

The legend of Yamraj and Yami: Yamraj is the God of death while Yami is the sister of Yamraj who was transformed in a sacred river called Yamuna. On the day of the Bhai duj, Yamuna invited her brother to her house. She offered aarti to her brother while Yamraj had brought some gifts for her sister. From that day onwards the tradition of Bahi Duj is coming on.
The legend of Lord Krishna: On the day of Bhai Duj, Lord Krishna visits the house of Subhadra after killing the demon Naraksura. Subhadra welcomes her brother and offers flowers and sweets along with Aarti. After
Bhai Dooj in 2012
that she puts a protective spot on the forehead of Lord Krishna. From that day onwards the tradition of bhai duj is coming on.
The significance of Bhai Duj: The Indian festivals have a lot of significance attached to them and there is a moral behind each of the story. The Bhai duj is highly significant as it strengthens the bond between the brother and the sister. Bhai Duj signifies the sacrifices made by brothers and sisters for each other. There is a story behind the Bhai duj festival in which both the sister and brother make great sacrifices for each other. Sister specially makes a lot of sacrifices for saving the life of her brother.

Regional differences: There are a bit of regional differences in the way the Puja is celebrated but over all there is similarity. In all the Indian states, the sister puts vermilion on the forehead of their brothers and then offer sweets and then brothers offer some gifts to the sister. In Bengal for example it is called bhai-phota. 'phota' is sandal wood paste which is applied on the forehead of the brother.

Bhai Dooj Festival Date: Thursday, 15 November 2012

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