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The Bengali Calendar

Bengali people in West Bengal follow a solar calendar with their New Year (Pohela Boishakh) falling on the 14th or the 15th of April in the Western Calendar. The Bengali year is 594 less than the AD or CE year of the Western Calendar with the current year being 1420. 

The inception of the Bangla calendar is debated with two famous hypotheses neither proved till date. One of the hypotheses revolves around the reign King of Gour or Gauda and the other kenned to be made by the regal astrologer of Emperor Akbar's reign, Aamir Fatehullah Siraji who researched on the lunar calendar and ameliorated it by making it as a coalescence of lunar and solar year-a distinctive feature of the Bengali calendar.

Calendar in Kolkata

Seasons as Per Bengali Calender

A total of six seasons is showcased in the Bengali calendar with two months comprising each season. The denominations of these six seasons are predicated on the denominations of the stars with deference to their particular location during the lunar cycle. The six seasons as per Bengali calender are:
  • Pohela Boishakh, Grishmô or Summer
  • Bôrsha or Rainy/Monsoon season
  • Shôrôt or Autumn
  • Hemôntô or the Dry season
  • šhit or Winter; and
  • Bôsôntô or Spring

Months as Per Bengali Calender

As per lunar mansions or location of moon with respect to particular stars during the lunar cycle, Bengali calender has twelve months.The names of the months are:
  • Bôishakh after the star Bishakha
  • Jyôishthô after the star Jyeshtha
  • Asharhô after the star Uttôrasharha
  • Shrabôn after the star Shrôbôna
  • Bhadrô after the star Purbôbhadrôpôd
  • Ashbin after the star Oshbini
  • Kartik after the star Krittika
  • Ogrôhayôn after the star Mrgôshira
  • Poish after the star Pushya
  • Magh after the star Môgha
  • Falgun after the star Uttorfalguni
  • Chôitrô after the star Chitra

Days as Per Bengali Calender

The month incorporates four weeks wherein like any other calendar there are seven days a week. In the Bengali Calendar, the designations of the days of the week are predicated on celestial objects.

Monday is called Sombar after “Som” in Sanskrit corresponding to Lord Shiva or Moon
Tuesday as Mônggôlbar denominated after the planet Mars called Mônggôl in Sanskrit
Wednesday as Budhbar coined after the planet Mercury termed as Budh in Sanskrit
Thursday as Brihôshpôtibar designated after the planet Jupiter, Brihôshpôti in Sanskrit
Friday as Shukrôbar representing planet Jupiter called Shukrô in Sanskrit
Saturday as Shonibar designated after the planet Saturn called Shôni in Sanskrit
Sunday represented by the Sun (Rôbi in Sanskrit) thus termed as Rôbibar. 

The day commences and ends at sunrise in the Bengali calendar, unlike in the Gregorian calendar, where the day commences at midnight.

Calculation of Leap Year

For the calculation of leap year, in the sidereal solar calendar seven is subtracted from the year and the result is divided by 39. If after the division the remnant (= (year - 7) / 39) is zero or can be divided by 4, the corresponding year is specified as a leap year containing 366 days. 

With this the last month of the calendar, Choitro, taking 31 days. Thus as per the said calculation there are 10 leap years in every 39 years in the Bengali calendar.

Popularity of Bengali Calender

In the eastern South Asia the popularity of the calendar is fundamentally due to the adaptation to the unique seasonal patterns in the region. However even in moist Bengali verbalizing regions.

The Gregorian calendar has largely superseded Bengali calendar albeit till date the Bengali calendar is considered essential for marking holidays concrete to the Bengali culture.

The Bengali calendar is approximately cognate to the Hindu solar calendar, which is itself predicated on the Surya Siddhanta. The same is additionally followed by residents of Assam, Nepal, Kerala, Mithila, Manipur, Punjab, Tripura, Orissa and Tamil Nadu.

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