Celebrated on the 13th day of the Chaitra month of the Indian lunar calendar, Mahavir Jayanti or Mahavir Janma Kalyanak celebrates the birth anniversary of the Mahavir, who was the last of the 24 Tirthankaras.
Born as Vardhamana in the royal household of Vajji, in present-day Bihar, Mahavir was believed to have brought prosperity to his kingdom. It is also believed that he was born in the revered Ikshvaku lineage into which Lord Ram too was born. After fulfilling his responsibilities as a king of the democratic state for 30 years, he led a life of penance for 12 years. By giving up everything that did not serve the purpose of enlightenment, he became a Thirthankara by rising above the cycle of life and death.