A Brief History of Maharashtra Day :
Much of the world celebrates May 1 as International Workers’ Day. In India, the first day of May is Maharashtra Day.
On this day, 54 years ago, the modern-day state of Maharashtra was created.
The western states of Gujarat and Maharashtra, spread across an area of almost 194 square miles along the western coastline of India, were the last to be redrawn along linguistic lines.
In the mid-1950s, a regional movement known as the Samyukta Maharashtra Andolan started agitations, demanding a separate Marathi-speaking state. The protests ended in 1960 when the Bombay Reorganization Act was passed by India’s Parliament to divide the multilingual state of Bombay into Gujarat and Maharashtra, with Ahmedabad and Bombay serving as their respective capitals. The legislation came into effect on May 1, 1960.
Then in 1995, the year Shiv Sena, a right-wing Hindu nationalist party, won the state elections, the port city of Bombay was renamed after a Hindu goddess Mumbadevi and called Mumbai. The idea behind renaming the financial and entertainment hub of India was to strengthen the local Marathi identity in the state.
Maharashtra commemorates the day with a parade in its capital city Mumbai. Stock markets, schools and offices across the state remain closed on this day.