Maharashtra Day 2024

1 May 2024
Maharashtra    Regional holiday

Maharashtra Day celebrates the anniversary of the formation of the state on this day in 1960. Note that several other states also observe a holiday on this day for International Labour Day.

When India gained its independence from Britain, the regional constitution of the country was a lot different. Hundreds of princely states had to be united and a state system established to administer the nation. In 1956, The States Reorganisation Act defined boundaries for states within India on the basis of languages. While many of the new states are familiar to us today, it did throw up some anomalies - such as the Bombay state which squished together people speaking languages like Marathi, Gujarati, Kutchi and Konkani which covered two distinct linguistic groups.

Due to these differences, a movement emerged to divide the Bombay State into two states — one where people primarily spoke Gujarati and Kutchhi and the other where people primarily spoke Marathi and Konkani.

As a result, the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat came into existence according to the Bombay Reorganisation Act, 1960 enacted by Parliament on April 25th 1960. The act came into effect on May 1st 1960. Under the Bombay Reorganisation Act, Maharashtra and Gujarat were divided and both states attained statehood.

This holiday applies to schools, offices and companies under the jurisdiction of the State and Central Government, which celebrate the day by organising various programmes.

Maharashtra Day is commemorated by a parade at Shivaji Park in Dadar where the Governor of Maharashtra makes a speech. Other celebrations in the state include traditional Lavani music performances, folk songs and narration of poetries of popular Marathi saints.