Diwali celebrations are mainly spread over five days, from Dhanteras to Bhaiduj. However in some places like Maharashtra and Gujarat a day prior to Dhanteras known as Vasu Baras marks the start of Diwali festival.
Vasu Baras or Bagh Baras or Govatsa Dwadashi is the 12th day of the Krishna Paksha (waning phase of moon) of Ashwin month which is dedicated to the worship of the cow. In the hindi word Govatsa Go or Vasu means ‘cow’ and vatsa means calf while the world.
In India people, especially in rural areas symbolically consider that, the cow represents motherhood. In rural India, for thousands of families cow is the sole economic source. Keeping this in mind married women offer special pujas for the well being of cows a calf on this day. Images of Cow and Calf are also adorned with turmeric and kumkuma.
Vagh Baras is an name for the same festival in gujarati. The word ‘Vagh’ refers to repaying one’s financial debts. Therefore people clear their account books today and do not enter into new transactions. They start using new ledgers after Labh Pancham. In some regions, it is strictly prohibited to drink cow milk, ghee and curd on this day.
Vasu Baras 2016 Date :
In 2016, Vasu Baras will be celebrated on 27th October 2016.