People in many parts of India and Nepal welcome the ritual of Makar Sankranti, a harvest festival. Devotees pray to Sun God with divine gifts for prosperity in life.
Makar Sankranti marks the end of long winter nights which is more commonly known as the winter solstice. Devotees dedicate this festival to the religious Sun God Surya and pray to him with puja samagri of premium quality. From the day of the Makar Sankranti, the Sun starts its northward journey or Uttarayan journey. It usually occurs on the 14th of January and falls in the Hindu solar calendar of the month of Makara.
1. Knowledge About Makar Sankranti:-
Sankranti is an esteemed deity. She killed the devil Sankarsura and we find a mention of her bravery in the Panchang. On the day of the Sankranti, people take a dip in the holy Ganges, Yamuna, Godavari, Krishna, and Kaveri. It is also the time when they pray to the Sun to grant them happiness and prosperity in the journey of life. Makar Sankranti involves pan India celebrations where it has different names but observed on the same date. Maghi Sankranti is another popular nomenclature of this festival which holds much importance in Nepal.
2. Various Ways of Celebrating Makar Sankranti In Different Parts of India:-
People in different states have different ways of celebrating this auspicious ritual. Let us together with a little knowledge of the variety of customs and rituals followed.
- Punjab: Bathing in the river, in the early hours of Maghi is a customary ritual among Punjabis. Everyone visits the famous Mela that takes place at Sri Mukhtar Sahib on Maghi which commemorates a major historical event in Sikh history. They also consume khichuri and jaggery along with kheer which forms the main attraction.
- West Bengal: Sankranti also known as Poush Sankranti named after the month on which it falls, the ritual includes major celebrations. All sections of the Bengali community participate in a three-day festival that begins prior to the actual day and continues a day after. Devotees engage in pooja samagri online shopping for worshipping Devi Lakshmi on this day. One thing that is customary is enjoying delicious sweets made with jaggery, flour, suji coconut, and milk.
- Maharashtra: People exchange multicolored halwa and til ladoo on this day. It is a token of goodwill that Maharashtrians use to greet their loved ones on the auspicious occasion of Makar Sankranti. Married women also invite family and friends for celebrating the occasion of Haldi Kumkum. Another popular belief among them is that Lord Surya forgave his son Shani for his mistakes. Lord Shani visited him on Makar Sankranti.
- Karnataka: On this auspicious event of Sugi, girls wear new clothes and meet their loved ones. Since this region is famous for sugarcane, the festival prioritizes the harvest season. Also, kite flying is customary in northern Karnataka.
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