Makar Sankranti Festival Celebration in Different Parts of India | Makar Sankranti Different Name

Makar Sankranti is celebrated in the month of ' Magh' and is a harvest festival.It is a celebration of spring on the occasion of the 'ascent' of the sun to the north (Uttarayana).In Maharashtra,Karnataka as well as part of Andhra Pradesh , Makar Sankranti is a day of goodwill and friendship.Makar Sankranti marks the commencement of the sun's journey to the Northern Hemisphere(Makara raasi), signifying the onest of Uttarayana Punyakalam, and is a day of celebration all over the country.The day begins with people taking holy dips in the sacred rivers and worshiping the Sun.Makar Sankranti festival is celebrated, all over India, it is called by different names in different places.  While Makar Sankranti is most popular in West India, south Indians called this festival as Pongal and North people celebrated it as Lohri. There are also some other names of the same festival and those are Uttarayan, Maghi, Khichdi.

Traditionally, this period is considered an auspicious time.The veteran Bhishma of Mahabharata chose to die during this period.Bhishma was made to lie on the bed built of arrows by Arjuna.Having the boon to choose the time of his death, he waited on a bed of arrows to depart from this world only during this period.It is believed that those who die in this period have no rebirth.

For the people in the Indo Gangetic plain, the day begins with taking dips in the Ganga and offering water to Sun God.The dip is said to purify the self and bestow 'punya'. Special puja is offered as a thanks giving for good harvest.According to folklore, girls who take the holy dip get handsome husbands and boys get beautiful.

Oil seeds and rice are two important ingredients of this festival.In the rice-centric belt of Bihar and eastern Uttar Pradesh, people have a special meal prepared mainly of rice , on this day.Also known as Gangasagar Mela, on this day people come from all over India for ceremonial cleansing in the river Hooghly, near Kolkatta.In Maharashtra , when two persons greet each other on this festive day, they exchange a few grains of multi-colored sugar and fried oil seeds mixed with molasses and say 'till gud ghaya, god god bola'(henceforth, let there be only friendship and good thoughts between us).

Gujarat: In Gujarat , the pandits consider Sankranti an auspicious day to grant scholarships and certificates of merit students who have successfully completed their studies in philosophy.In a Hindu household, new utensils are purchased and used for the first time.Brightly colored kites dot the skies on this day.

Bihar and Jharkhand : 'Makar Sankranti' is celebrated on the 14th and the 15th of January in this part. On 14th January, people have 'chura', 'gur', milk, curd, vegetables and sweets made from sesame seeds. Some people also enjoy flying kites. On15th January, people perform worship and enjoy a dish of 'dahi-chura' followed by 'laddoos' made from sesame seeds. A special 'khichdi' accompanied with 'ghee', 'papad', 'chokha' and 'achaar' is served to the people in the evening. 

Karnataka: In Karnataka , men, women and children attired in colorful tunics visit friends and relatives and exchange pieces of sugarcane, a mixture of fried oil seeds, molasses, pieces of dry coconut, peanuts and fried gram.The significance of this exchange is that sweetness should prevail in all the dealings.As part of the festival cows and bulls are given a wash and the horns are painted with bright colors and decorated with garland, and are taken in a procession around the village in accompaniment of pipes and drums.In the night a bonfire is lit and the animals are made to jump over the fire.

Tamil Nadu: It is a big event fot the Tamil and the people of Andhra Pradesh.The Telugu's call it 'Pedda Panduga', meaning big festival.The whole event lasts for four days, the first day Bhogi,the second day Sankranti , the third day Kanuma and the fourth day, Mukkanuma.

Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh : The people of these states celebrate 'Makar Sanranti' by having local delicacies like 'pheerni' 'kheer', 'pakodi', 'laddoo' and other such stuff. Married women exchange gifts while others give gifts, fruits, 'khichdi' and such things in charity. People fill the skies with kites and try to bring down the kites of others. 

One month preceding Sankranti is called Dhanurmasam and is also an auspicious period.People wake up early ,take bath and go around the streets singing devotional songs.House are whitewashed and farmers clean their warehouses.Colorful rangoli (muggulu) are drawn in the font yards of every house during this month.These artist floral designs are drawn on the floor with rice flour or fine powder of limestone.These patterns are decorated with colors adorned and with marigold placed on cow dung balls.Colorfully dressed young girls go round them singing songs.

Makar Sankranti Different Name  State Wise in India

In Bengal, Makar Sankranti is noted for the Ganga Sagar Mela and Pithey parban.
Bhogali Bihu is celebrated on the day in Assam.
Makar Mela is observed in Orissa.
Ghughuti or Kale Kauva in Uttarakhand.
In North India, it is the time of Lohri and Khichadi.
In Central India, it is Sankranti.
In Tamil Nadu, Makar Sankranti is observed as Pongal.
In Andhra Pradesh, it is known as Sankranthi.
In Karnataka - Sankranthi or Yellu Balla
In Maharashtra it Makar Sankranti and Til Gul.
In Kerala, the famous Sabarimala Pilgrimage comes to an end with sighting of the Makaravilakku.
In Gujarat and Rajasthan, it is known as Uttarayan and is noted for the kite flying event.

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