Gajan Festival

Gajan a Shaivite folk festival, held on CHAITRA SANGKRANTI (the last day of Chaitra.According to eng calendar ,its in middle of april) and on full moon nights up to the full moon of Asadh. The festival is associated with various gods. There may thus be SHIVA's Gajan, the Gajan of DHARMA THAKUR, the Gajan of Nil etc. But the main object of this festival is to celebrate the marriage of the sun and the earth. The reason for this festival is perhaps to appease the sun and pray for rain during the hot, dry month of Chaitra. The festival is arranged on the premises of Shiva temples. Those who take part in the festival after making vows are called sannyasi or bhaktya. They take sacrificial food and wear uturi (wrappers). Each one holds a staff. They try to satisfy the god through different acts of penance, such as piercing their tongues with nails, jumping upon thorns, walking on burning charcoal, etc.