Pakhala Dibasa: Celebrating the Odia Delicacy

Delicious Pakhala Kansa on Pakhala Dibasa

Pakhala Dibasa (ପଖାଳ ଦିବସ) is like a festival celebrated in the Indian state of Odisha to commemorate the traditional dish pakhala. The day is observed every year on March 20, and it is a celebration of Odia culture and cuisine.

Pakhala Bhata with Badi Chura, Baigana Bharta, Machha Bhaja, and Amba

Pakhala is a rice-based dish that is popular in Odisha. It is made by soaking cooked rice in water overnight, along with some yogurt or curd, and then served with a variety of side dishes like fried fish, papad, and pickles. The dish is often eaten during the hot summer months as it is refreshing and helps to cool down the body.

Pakhala Kansa by Manas Muduli

The origins of Pakhala Dibasa can be traced back to ancient times when farmers in Odisha would use pakhala as a means of preserving cooked rice for longer periods during the hot and humid summer months. Over time, the dish became a staple food in the region, and its popularity led to the creation of the festival.

Pakhala Dibasa: Celebrating the Odia Delicacy

On Pakhala Dibasa, people in Odisha celebrate by preparing and sharing pakhala with friends and family. Many restaurants and food vendors also offer special menus featuring pakhala and other traditional Odia dishes.

The Best Pakhala Bela Shared on Pakhala Dibasa by Banasmita Behera in 2023

The festival is not only a celebration of Odia cuisine but also a way of promoting the state's rich cultural heritage. Many cultural events, music concerts, and other activities could be organized on Pakhala Dibasa to showcase the traditional art, music, and dance forms of Odisha.


Pakhala Dibasa is not just a festival, but also a way of bringing people together and strengthening the bonds of community. It is a celebration of the simple pleasures of life and the joys of sharing food and culture with others.

Pakhala Bhata with Tomato Poda, Mixture, Baigana Bharta shared by Sangram Keshari Senapati

In conclusion, Pakhala Dibasa is a unique festival that celebrates the traditional Odia dish pakhala and promotes the state's rich cultural heritage. It is a time to come together, share food and culture, and celebrate the joys of life. If you are ever in Odisha during summertime, make sure to try some pakhala and experience the warmth and hospitality of the Odia people.

N.B.: All these photographs are taken from Manas Muduli, Banasmita Behera, and Sangram Keshari Senapati.

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