**Bhubaneswar: ** The true fabric of Indian culture can be seen by the diverse festivals celebrated in India by different religious groups. Incidentally, many a times two major festivals of two different religions coincide on the same day, adding a different unique flavour to the diverse culture of the country.
This year, the Goddess Durga immersion and the Moharram are coinciding on the same day, making the occasion all the more festive and joyful. Similarly, Jagannath’s Rath Yatra and Eid-ul-Fitr were celebrated with full fervour on the same day this year.
The people of India have preserved the uniqueness in diversity, and that has become a way of life. It sends a strong message of secularism in India across the world.
Muslim hands play a greater role in Durga Puja as many Muslim artisans get engaged in making idols of Goddess Durga and the decorations.
In 2015 and 2016, Ganesh Chaturthi and Eid-ul-Fitr coincided on the same day, with people sending greetings for both the occasion together hoping that these coinciding festivals would fade away differences, if any.
Many a times, the major Hindu-Muslim festivals fall on consecutive days or within a gap of few days. So the people join hands to celebrate most of the Hindu and Muslim festivals together.
In March 2008, the Hindus, Muslims and Christians got a rare chance to celebrate festivals of their respective faiths together in March 21. Hindu festival of colours, Holi, Christian’s Good Friday marking the crucification of Jesus Christ and the birth of Prophet Mohammed who propagated Muslim religion fell on the same day.
The Hindu calendar is lunar (or luni-solar), and as such, Hindu festivals don’t fall on a fixed day of the Gregorian calendar. The Muslims follow the lunar calendar whereas the Christians follow the Gregorian calendar. But still, sometimes some major festivals come together to be celebrated enthusiastically by all people irrespective of their religions. It testimonies the real spirit of the Indian essence of secularism.