Makar Sankranti can be known as one of the biggest festivals in India as it is celebrated in different parts of the country in a different style.
The significance of the festival varies geographically as we move from one state to another, with every state celebrating and welcoming the new session of the harvest in their own indigenous manner.
It is celebrated on January 14, Makar Sankranti holds different historical importance and it is celebrated with different names in different states.
Let's have a look at how it is celebrated in different parts of India:
PUNJAB - LOHRI
People in Punjab celebrate Lohri by lighting bonfire, worshipping it, wearing new clothes, distributing sweets. This festival marks the harvest of winter crops.
RAJASTHAN - SANKRANTI
In Rajasthan, it is celebrated with the name of Makar Sankranti only. There is a huge celebration with the making of special Rajasthani delicacies, dancing and getting together with family.There are two major traditions associated with this festival in Rajasthan.
The women offer 13 other married women gifts (can be clothes, make-up or household item).
The first makar sankranti after marriage holds utmost importance as the parents invite the woman at their house and host them.
Kite flying is also observed traditionally on makar sankranti.
Gujarati people await this festival to fly kites as observed in Rajasthan. It is called Uttarayan in Gujarati and it lasts for two days.
The word originates from the course that the sun takes as it starts to move along the northern sky.It is celebrated on January 14 and 15 where 14 is Uttarayan and 15 is Vasi Uttarayan.
The major cities and their skies are seen full of colourful kites.
In Uttar Pradesh, this festival is celebrated with great gusto and involves traditional bathing and worshipping God.
In Maharashtra, it is usually celebrated for three days.
In this ongoing festival, people exchange multi-coloured halwa, puran poli and til-gul laddoo and greet each other with good wishes.People hope to forget all the hostilities against each other and forgive the past to come together as a family.
WEST BENGAL- POSH PARBON
Makar Sankranti is named after a special month in fall in Bengali.The sweets exchanged include the freshly harvested paddy, the date palm syrup in the form of Khejurer Gur and Patali. All sections of society participate in a three-day begins on the day before Sankranti and ends on the day after.
The Goddess Lakshmi is usually worshipped on the day of Sankranti. It is called Baharlakshmi puja as well.
ASSAM- BHOGALI BIHU
It marks the end of the harvest season and is a happy festival of crops harvested.It is celebrated with feasting, dancing, and celebration of bonfires.However, it is not only limited to the farmers' homes.The other name Bhogali Bihu, translated to the festival of food.
It is a four-day festival in Tamil Nadu:
Day 1: Bhogi Pandigai
People destroy and burn old clothes to let go of the bad past and emergence of a new future.
Day 2: Thai Pongal
It is the main festival where the tradition of rice prevails. The rice is boiled and offered to the god.
Day 3: Maattu Pongal
Cattles are decorated and worshipped as a sign of thanks for their role in agricultural processes.
Jallikattu, in the simplest of terms, is a sport conducted as part of Mattu Pongal, the third day of the four-day-long harvest festival Pongal.
Day 4: Kaanum Pongal
People wear new clothes and visit relatives, exchange gifts.
The festival is celebrated four days from the last day of the Tamil month Maargazhi to the third day of the Tamil month Thai.