Bhai Dooj celebrates the relationship between brothers and sisters and is very much like another sibling festival, Rakshabandhan.
An auspicious day, Bhai Dooj happens two days after Diwali.
Also referred to as Bhaubeej, Tikka, Bhai Phonta, the festival is celebrated on the second lunar day of Shukla Paksha (bright fortnight) in the Vikram Samvat Hindu calendar or of Shalivahan Shaka calendar month of Kartika.
This year, Tikka will take place on October 2, 2019. The Shubh Mururat for Bhai Dooj is from 01:11 pm and 13:25 pm, a 2 hours and 14 minutes duration to wish the best for one’s brother.
On this day, sisters invite their brothers over a meal often including their favourite dishes. The procedure varies across India, but the essence of the festival is largely the same everywhere.
Sisters perform aarti for their brothers and apply a red tilak on their foreheads, and this signifies their prayers for the long and happy lives for their brothers.
In return, brothers give gifts or cash to their sisters.
According to a mythological Hindu legend, ‘Yamraj’, the God of Death visited her sister Yamuna on this day. Yamuna welcomed her brother with a tilak ceremony and did his aarti. She offered him sweets and lavish food. Yamraj became very happy seeing the warm hospitality of Yamuna. So, he asked her to wish something and promised her of making it happen. Yamuna asked ‘Yama’ that on this day, all brothers should visit their sisters’ house and all sisters should welcome their brothers in the same way as she did. This is how the custom of Bhai Dooj came into practice.
There is another legend that revolves around the Bhai Dooj festivity. According to this legend, Lord Krishna visited her sister, Subhadra on this day after killing the demon Narkasura. Subhadra welcomed Krishna with flowers and sweets and applied a ceremonial tilak on his forehead. It is said that since then, Bhai Dooj is celebrated.