Makar Sankranti Festival Information

Makar SankrantiIndia is one of the ancient lands of culture and heritage thus claiming to be one of the finest resources in the study of world culture. It depicts the versatility and essence of culture irrespective of caste, creed, and religion. It is evident from the variety of festivals celebrated every year. Hence “festivals” play a key role to ignite the richness and flavor of the occasion. Different kinds of festivals for numerous occasions are celebrated all over the country having their own individuality. Each festival reflects tradition and heritage of the caste or tribe or religion from which they originate. People from all over the country participate in each kind of festivals sharing the brotherhood among them. Festival is a kind of bond which links all religions and regions of the country, redefining their unity and secularity in this modern era.

Makar Sankranti is one of the most important festival celebrated mostly among the Hindus. Sankranti, a sanskrit word, means transmigration of Sun from one Rashi to another. Rashi means Zodiac in Indian astrology. Actually, this transmigration of Sun from one Rashi to another occurs at the end day of every month according to the Hindu Lunar Calendar and hence there are a total of 12 “Sankrantis”. This festival takes place on the last day of the month of Magha according to the Hindu lunar calendar. This festival marks the journey of sun towards north and is termed as “Uttaranya”.

The festival is celebrated in various names in various parts of the country. In Goa, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, Bihar, Jharkhand & West Bengal it is known as Makar Sankranti. The people of Gujarat, Uttarkhand & Rajasthan call this festival as Uttarayan. Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh named this festival as Maghi. This is named as Magh Bihu in Assam Valley.

Makar Sankranti Makar Sankranti Makar Sankranti

The day is considered as one of the holiest days for the Hindus and many of the devotees start the day by a dip in the holy river of Ganga.  The Ganga Sagar Mela and the Kumbh mela at Haridwar are one of the major attractions during the festival. In some parts of the country, the festival is celebrated as the festival of the Kites and different types of Colored and decorated kites fill the sky. Various types of foods, especially sweet dishes is another of the major attractions of the festival and people exchange sweets and greetings as a part of the celebration with their near and dear ones.

The festival is celebrated in various places in various ways. In Bengal, the lord Shiva is worshiped. In the coastal regions the festival is celebrated as the annual harvest festival. In some places, Lord Indra is also worshipped as per the local traditions. In spite of these several variations, the central idea of the festival however remains the same.