Nuakhai is an agricultural festival mainly celebrated by the people of Western Odisha and Southern Chattisgarh in India. It is observed to welcome the new rice of the season. According to the calendar, this festival is observed on the Panchami tithi i.e. the fifth day of the lunar fortnight of the month of Bhadrapada (August – September), the day after the Ganesh Chaturthi. It is the most important social festival practiced in western Odisha and adjoining areas of Simdega in Jharkhand, where the culture of western Odisha is much more prevalent as there are many things to learn about agriculture with Human behavior also.
Nuakhai is a unique festival and is also called Nuakhai Parab or Nuakhai Bhetghat. Nuakhai is also known as Navakhai Parv in Chattisgarh. Nuakhai as the name suggests, the word Nua means new and Khai means food, so Nuakhai means the farmers are in procession of the newly harvested rice. The festival is marked as a new ray of hope, held the day after the Ganesh puja festival. It has great significance for farmers and the agricultural community. It is celebrated at a particular time of the day called lagan. Aersaa Pitha is prepared to observe this festival. When the lagan approaches, the people first remember their village god or goddess and then have their new.
Nuakhai is the agricultural festival observed by the people of Western Odisha. The festival is celebrated throughout Odisha, but it is especially important in the culture of western Odisha. Nuakhai is the festival for the worship of food grain. It has its best festivity in the Kalahandi, Sambalpur, Balangir, Bargarh, Sundergarh, Jharsuguda, Subarnapur, Boudh, and Nuapada districts of Odisha.