Maha Shivratri is a Hindu festival and is celebrated annually to honour Lord Shiva. According to the Hindu calendar, the festival falls on the new moon day in the month of Magha.
To respect religious or patriotic sentiments of the public on this day February 21, the government has declared it to be a dry day in Delhi.
All liquor shops are to remain shut on this day.
There are many legends associated with the origin and history of Maha Shivratri. A legend says it is the night when Shiva and Parvati got married.
A legend also tells, Shivratri is the auspicious day when Lord Shiva gulped the Halahala, the deadly poison produced during Samudra Manthan, which was capable of destroying the entire world.
He held it in his throat due to which his throat turned blue. Hence, he is also known as Neelakantha (the blue-throated one).
Lord Shiva embodies destruction in Hinduism, being one of the major gods in the trinity fold. He symbolises the last stage of human experience i.e, destruction. Lord Shiva is also termed as Mahadev. He is often ascertained and further defined as the ‘Yogi’ of the cosmos or the one who has attained balance in the universe.