Final Randoli Perahera in Kandy today
A very significant event of Buddhist history took place on a Nikini Full Moon Day , namely the First Council of the Sangha after the death and Parinirvana (Parinibbana) of the Buddha. This First Council in Rajagriha (Rajagaha), which was the capital of the most important Indian kingdom (Magadha) those days, was led by the deciple Maha Kassapa. It is of utmost importance as it collected (only orally) the words of the Buddha as his secretary Ananda Maha Thero remembered and recited them in front of the monks who approved the correctness of the texts. This means, Nikini Poya is the day of the collection of the Buddhist Holy scriptures called Tipitaka..
The Kandy Perahera culmiates on the Nikini Poya day. It is called Esala Perahera, because it takes place in the month after Esala Poya. But don`t be confused: There is no Kandy Perahera on Esala Poya day. The festival season in Kandy begins on New Moon after Esala Full Moon and ends on Nikini Poya day -or more precisely: on the day after Nikini Poya night, with the water-cutting ceremony on the so-called “Day-Perahera”.