Enthusiasm and excitement for this festival starts much in advance. Bright, elegant and fanciful rakhis adorn the markets from the month of July. Shopping for Rakshabandhan starts amidst zest and zeal. New clothes, sweets, gifts, rakhi and other pooja essentials are the main shopping features for the special day.
On the day of Rakshabandhan, entire family gets ready for the ceremony. They gather to offer prayers, after which, the sister performs the ritual. After the completion of the rituals, the family revels in music, dance, festive food, gifts and wholesome fun.
Rakshabandhan is not restricted as the festival of siblings. All members of the society also celebrate this festival. Rabindranath Tagore wanted to foster the feeling of brethren in the society. He made Rakshabandhan festival as the medium to bring people together. He encouraged the bond of fellowship among Hindus and Muslims to fight against the British Empire. The tradition continues with women tying rakhis to close friends and neighbors.
On this day, a pooja thali is prepared with a lamp, holy thread (Rakhi), sweets and flowers, roli or tika (vermilion mark on the forehead), incense sticks among other traditional pooja items. The ceremony begins by offering prayers to God. The sister, then, ties the sacred thread at an auspicious time. She applies tika on the brother’s forehead, gives sweets and wishes for his happiness and well-being. Brother acknowledges the gesture with a gift and a promise to stand by his sister through thick and thin.