Makar SankrantiSeth Anandram Jaipuria School Ghaziabad
Of the many festivals celebrated in our country, Makar Sankranti is one of the liveliest and most vibrant festivals. Skies filled with colorful kites flying high, families enjoying together, eating sweet dishes and delicacies made particularly of jaggery and sesame, can be seen all around the country. Each state celebrates this day with different traditions, representing its own culture. Makar Sankranti is known by a variety of different names all over the country. ‘Makara Sankramana’ in Karnataka, ‘Til Sankrant’ in Bihar, ‘Hangrai’ in Tripura, ‘Thai Pongal’ in not only Tamil Nadu but also in Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Singapore, ‘Uttarayan’ in Gujrat. All these names synonymize the festival dedicated to the deity Surya or the Sun. Even though the festival is known by different names, its significance remains solitary. Makar Sankranti marks the day the Sun enters the Capricorn zodiac or the ‘Makara rashi’ and also marks the end of the month with the winter solstice. The days hence Makar Sankranti are longer than earlier. Being one of the few ancient festivals observed in accordance with the solar cycle, it always falls on the same date almost every year, which is the 14th day of January. The day is welcomed and celebrated with many festivities including kite flying, bonfires, Surya Puja. Pilgrims can also be seen taking a dip in the holy water of the three significant rivers in Hinduism, Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati, which holds great importance in the Hindu religion. The day of Makar Sankranti plays an important role, not only religiously but scientifically as well. It’s a day to celebrate with family and friends, a day to socialize, a day of joy and happiness.