Bakapañcaka

(‘pentad related to the crane’)

Vratas or religious vows and observances are an integral part of Hinduism in practice. They are common even today. Among the several such vratas, ‘Baka-pañcaka’ is one listed by religious digests. The five days from Kārttika śukla ekādaśi (eleventh day of the bright fortnight in the month of Kārttika, generally falling in November) to pūrṇimā (the full-moon day) are so called since it was believed that even a baka or a crane will not eat meat in these days. Hence, abstaining from eating meat during these five days is the main discipline expected of the votary.

See also VRATAS.