Makar Sankranti is celebrated with much enthusiasm where everyone seems spellbound by the festive mood. This is one of the Hindu festivals which is celebrated by the majority of India as well as other countries.
Different rituals take place as per the region, and it is also known by different names. However, the reason for the celebration always remains the harvesting of crops. This is a thanksgiving festival which farmers and people celebrated and thank the God for making suitable conditions to let the crops grow.
Understanding the fact that there would be no life on Earth without grains, Makar Sankranti is a great fanfare for everyone. This is also the time when the Sun travels from the Southern hemisphere to the Northern hemisphere and marks the end of winters. The celebration happens with great passion in every state of India.
Let’s see how Makar Sankranti is illustrious in different states of India-
In Maharashtra, distributing the sweet made of jaggery takes place and holds a high significance. Since Sankranti is a festival where sugarcane is the main ingredient, people there start growing sugarcanes in the field and turn the freshly cut sugarcanes into jaggery. They then used this jaggery to make sweets and distribute them among people.
In Maharashtra, kite flying is another noticeable activity that takes place during the celebration of the festival. Women buy themselves new clothes and jewelry, and they adorn themselves with the same.
In Andhra Pradesh, it is a three days celebration which starts from 14th January every year and ends on 16th January. Bhogi is the first day on which people collect all the waste material of the home, such as useless woods, while farmers collect agricultural wastage to burn it in the bonfire they create.
Kanuma is the next day that is on 15th January; this is the day of cleaning the cattle and worshipping the bulls, cows, and buffaloes since these animals are significant to the farmers.
The third and final day is dedicated to the sweet making called Pongali, which is similar to Pongal made in Tamil Nadu on Makar Sankranti. The newly harvested rice is used as the prime ingredient along with sugarcanes, jaggery, mung dal, and other items to enhance the flavor of the sweet.
However, in Tamil Nadu, it is a four days fare where on the first-day, people clean their homes and gather the useless timber to burn. On the second day, they make the sweet Pongal and enjoy it with their friends and relatives. On the third day, they clean their cattle and worship and adorn the animals. On the fourth day, the leftover of food is placed in one place, and women of the home pray for their brothers and family for health and wealth.
People in Karnataka also celebrate this festival with much rejoicing where they wear colorful clothes, and the entire environment feels delighted. People exchange sugarcanes with each other as per the tradition here. Along with the freshly harvested sugarcanes, people also exchange a mixture of seeds such as sesame seeds, molasses, pieces of dry coconuts, fried gram, and peanuts.
They also honor their cows and bulls that help them in the fields. These animals are bathed and adorned with garlands and bells; their horns are painted with bright colors.
In Gujarat, it is a two days fare, and kite flying is the most important tradition here without which Makar Sankranti can’t be said celebrated. Kite festival of Gujarat is famous all over India that people visit here to witness this vibrant festival. The entire sky can be witnessed, filled with colorful kites of various shapes and sizes. People also distribute gifts among relatives, and the famous Gujarati dishes are made to savor with the family.
Makar Sankranti inUttar Pradesh is more inclined toward following the religious regime and rituals associated. People here wake up early, and they take a bath in the holy Ganga river. They worship their God in the temple and donate khichdi (a cooked mixture of rice and lentils) among poor people.
A major crowd visits the Triveni Sangam in Allahabad to attend the grand fair. Pilgrimage sites like Haridwar and Garh Mukteshwar get jam-packed by the devotees as a part of the celebration. People from other states also come here to become a part of Magha Mela and to have a dip in Ganga on this auspicious day.