Bhaskarabda Calendar


    In News

    • The Bhaskarabda calendar will be added to the Saka and Gregorian in the official calendar of the Assam government.


    • Bhaskarabda is an era counted from the date of the ascension of Bhaskar Varman,  7th-century local ruler of Kamrup and contemporary of Harshavardhana.
    • It is a lunisolar calendar.
    • Bhaskarabda began when Bhaskaravarman was crowned ruler of the Kamrupa kingdom.
    • The themes of this calendar could be wildlife, plants, culture, cuisine and other aspects of Assam.
    • Unlike the Gregorian, where a day starts at midnight, the Assamese calendar begins and ends at sunrise over 24 hours. 
    • While the Gregorian goes by the solar cycle, the Saka and Bhaskarabda use a lunisolar system based on both the phases of the moon and the solar year.
    • The gap between Bhaskarabda and Gregorian is 593 years.
    • In addition to Saka and Gregorian, Bhaskarabda will be used in the official calendar by the Assam government.

    Bhaskar Varman (600–650 AD)

    • Bhaskar Varman, the last of the Varman dynasty, was perhaps the most illustrious of the kings of the medieval Kamarupa. 
    • After being captured by the Gauda king during the reign of his father, he was able to re-establish the rule of the Varman’s. 
    • He made political alliances with Harshavardhana of Thaneswar, against the alliance of the Gauda and East Malwa. He is known for this alliance against Shashanka, the first major ruler of Bengal (Karna suvarna).
    • He was visited by Chinese pilgrims, Xuanzang and Li Yi-piao, the envoy of the Tang dynasty who has left accounts of the king and the kingdom.
    • Bhaskaravarman came to power after his brother Supratisthitavarman had died. He was the first Kamarupa king to claim descent from the mythical Narakasura, Bhagadatta and Vajradatta.
    • He issued the Dubi and Nidhanpur copper plate grants, re-issued after his ancestor Bhutivarman, and a clay seal found in Nalanda.

    Type of Calendars

    • Solar
    • Any dating system is based on the seasonal year of approximately 365 1/4 days, the time it takes the Earth to revolve once around the Sun.
    • Lunar
    • Any dating system is based on a year consisting of synodic months—i.e., complete cycles of phases of the Moon.
    • Luni-Solar
    • In the lunisolar calendar, months are lunar but years are solar, it was used in the early civilizations of the whole Middle East and in Greece.

    Various Calendars in India

    • In India, four types of calendars are followed:
      • Vikram Samvat (Hindu lunar calendar)
      • Saka Samvat (Hindu Solar calendar)
      • Hijri Calendar (Islamic lunar calendar)
      • Gregorian Calendar (Scientific solar calendar)- followed universally
    • Vikram Samvat: 
      • Dates back to 57 B.C.
      • Introduced by King Vikramaditya to mark his victory over the Saka rulers.
      • 57 B.C. is the zero years.
      • It is a lunar calendar as it is based on the movement of the moon.
      • Every year is divided into 12 months and each month is divided into two phases.
      • The bright half is called the Shuklapaksha (15 days). It starts with the new moon and ends with a full moon.
      • The dark half is called the Krishna paksha (15 days). It starts with the full moon and ends with a new moon.
      • The month begins with the dark half.
      • There are 354 days in a year.
      • Hence every third and fifth year in a cycle of five years has 13 months (the 13th month is called Adhik Mass).
    • Saka Samvat: 
      • The zero year of Saka Samvat is 78 A.D.
      • It was started by Saka rulers to mark their victory over Kushanas.
      • It is a solar calendar.
      • It was adopted by the Government of India as the official calendar in the year 1957.
      • Every year has 365 days.
      • The names of the months in Saka Calendar are:
        • Chhaitra (March 21 – April 20)
        • Vaishakha (April 21-May 21)
        • Jyeshtha (May 22-June 21)
        • Ashadha (June 22- July 22)
        • Shravana (July 23-August 22)
        • Bhaadra (August 22-September 22)
        • Ashwin (September 23-October 22)
        • Kartika (October 23-November 21)
        • Agrahayana (November 22-December 21)
        • Pausha (December 22-January 20)
        • Magha (January 21- February 19) and
        • Phalguna (February 20-March 20/21)
    • Hijri calendar: 
      • It is a lunar calendar.
      • The zero year is 622 A.D.
      • It was initially started and followed in Saudi Arabia.
      • Every year has 12 months and 354 days.
      • The first month is called Muharram.
      • Ninth month is called Ramadan. During this month, Muslims observe a fast for the purification of souls. The morning breakfast is called Shehri and evening food is called Iftar.
      • The 12 months of the calendar are:
        • Muharram
        • Safar
        • Rabi’ al-awwal (Rabi’ I)
        • Rabi’ al-thani (Rabi’ II)
        • Jumada al-awwal (Jumada I)
        • Jumada al-thani (Jumada II)
        • Rajab
        • Sha’ban
        • Ramadan
        • Shawwal
        • Dhu al-Qi’dah
        • Dhu al-Hijjah
    • Gregorian calendar: 
      • Scientific calendar.
      • Every year has 364.25 days.
      • It is a solar calendar and is followed universally.

    Source: TH