Celebrations begin across the country marking the harvest festival that has different names throughout India. From Makar Sankranti to Pongal to Bihu, celebrations vary across states.
Gujarat | Colourful kites hit markets on the occasion of Makar Sankranti festival in Vadodara (13.01) pic.twitter.com/DmfoQxLhRw— ANI (@ANI) January 14, 2023
In Gujarat, Uttarayan, as Makara Sankranti is called in Gujarati, is a major festival in the state that is celebrated across two days. The highlight for the people of the state is kite flying. Kites for Uttarayan are made of special light-weight paper and bamboo and are mostly rhombus shaped with central spine and a single bow.
This year, several special kites were spotted in the market with various themes.
#WATCH | Tamil Nadu: Students of Sri Meenakshi Government College for Women in Madurai celebrate Pongal, a four-day harvest festival. The festival starts on 15th January and will continue till 18th January (13.01) pic.twitter.com/cWIZYP8oKh— ANI (@ANI) January 14, 2023
Considered the biggest festival in Tamil Nadu, Pongal as Makara Sankranti is called, the festive mood goes on for four days in the state. Day 1 marks Bhogi Pandigai, Day 2 is Thai Pongal, Day 3 Maattu Pongal and Kaanum Pongal is celebrated on day 4. The main festival is marked by the making of a Sweet Pongal dish.
#WATCH | Uttar Pradesh: Devotees take a holy dip in the river Ganga in Varanasi on the occasion of #MakarSankranti pic.twitter.com/YiLdDrgbwk— ANI UP/Uttarakhand (@ANINewsUP) January 14, 2023
The festival is known as Kicheri in Uttar Pradesh and the key highlight is ritual bathing. Over two million people gather at their respective sacred places for this holy bathing such as Allahabad and Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh and Haridwar in Uttarakhand. The Ganga sees a huge influx of people who gather there to take a holy dip every year.
West Bengal | Several Hindu devotees and Naga Sadhus from different parts of the country gathered at Kolkata’s Babu Ghat to take a holy dip during Gangasagar Mela on the occasion of Makar Sankranti (13.01) pic.twitter.com/vj6KsPukoT— ANI (@ANI) January 14, 2023
In West Bengal, Sankranti, also known as Poush Sankranti is celebrated across three days and Goddess Lakshmi is usually worshipped on the day of Sankranti. Freshly harvested paddy and the date palm syrup are used to make traditional Bengali sweets. Parts of the state also follow the tradition of taking a holy dip to mark the festivities.
Telangana | BRS MLC K Kavitha participated in the Bhogi celebrations organised by Bharat Jagruthi at KBR park in Hyderabad. pic.twitter.com/n31mFG4Sxy— ANI (@ANI) January 14, 2023
As part of the Sankranti celebrations, states celebrate the Bhogi festival also refered to as Lohri in parts of the country. In the south, Bhogi marks the beginning of the Pongal festival celebrations. Indra, the Lord of the Rain, is honoured on the first day in gratitude for the fertility of their agricultural land.
#WATCH | People dance and celebrate the festival of #Lohri in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. pic.twitter.com/P040kpSUJy— ANI MP/CG/Rajasthan (@ANI_MP_CG_RJ) January 13, 2023
The first day of the harvest season is celebrated in parts of the north as Lohri. Following the winter solstice, Lohri marks the beginning of longer days. It is a popular winter Punjabi folk festival celebrated primarily in Northern India.
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