Makar Sankranti
Makar Sankranti 2024 Kite Festival in India
India is famous as a diverse, agricultural country where people enjoy joyous festival celebrations. The religious importance of India’s harvest festival Makar Sankranti and the diversity of festivals is well known.
The Kite Festival, also known as the Festival of Kites, is a joyful and colorful event observed all over the world. It usually takes place once a year and involves flying kites of various sizes, shapes, and colors. The celebration frequently brings together families, friends, and communities, fostering a joyful, energetic atmosphere.
People gather in open areas like parks, fields, or beaches during the Makar Sankranti the Festival of Kites, where they launch their kites into the sky. People frequently compete to see whose kite can fly the highest or who can pull off the most amazing tricks and moves. Many kites are flown in the sky, adorning it with a dazzling display of colors and patterns.
The Festival of Kites may be accompanied by many regional traditions and customs. For instance, the festival is widely observed in India under the names Makar Sankranti and Uttarayan. People participate in kite flying tournaments where they attempt to sever the strings of rival kites using specialized threads coated with glass powder. Kites are flown from roofs.
The Kite Festival includes not only kite flying but also other cultural activities, live music and dance performances, and delectable cuisine. It is a time for people to get together, enjoy the outdoors, and celebrate seasonal changes or other cultural and religious festivals in India.

Why do We celebrate Makar Sankranti?

Sankranti, which is described in the Vedas, explains how the Sun moves from one Rashi (zodiacal constellation) to the next. Consequently, a year has 12 Sankranti. The Makar Sankranti, also known as “Poush Sankranti“, is one of the few Hindu festivals in India that are in harmony with the solar cycle and is hence regarded as the most fortunate of them. The significance of Makar Sankranti extends beyond its religious connotations. In fact, the event heralds the start of the harvest season in India, when fresh crops are revered and joyfully shared.
The official end of Winter is marked by this day when the Sun starts moving from the Dakshinayana (South) to the Uttarayana (North) hemisphere. The event, which is both a religious celebration and a seasonal observance, also commemorates the sun’s entry into Makar Rashi, the zodiac sign of Capricorn.

What are the other names of Makar Sankranti?

The Most popular Indian festival is observed all across the nation and goes by several names depending on the location. 

Here is the name given to the Sankranti Festival in various regions of India: 

  • Lohiri (Punjab)
  • Pedda Panduga or Sankranti Panduga (Andhra Pradesh)
  • Poush sôngkranti (West Bengal)
  • Makara Chaula (Odisha)
  • Uttarayan (Gujarat)
  • Pongal (Tamil Nadu)
  • Magha Saaji (Himachal Pradesh)
  • Suggi Habba (Karnataka)
  • Magh/Bhogali Bihu (Assam)
  • Shishur Saenkraat (Kashmir Valley)
  • Sakraat (Bihar and Jharkhand)
  • Kicheri (UP)

How the Makar Sankranti Festival was observed in several Indian states?

In certain Indian states, Makar Sankranti Festival—also known as Uttarayan or simply Sankranti Festival—is widely observed. Although the festival’s basic elements are the same throughout the nation, each region has its own distinctive customs, rituals, and delicacies.

Here’s a glimpse of how the Makar Sankranti Festival is celebrated in different states of India given below:


Makar Sankranti Festival Celebration in Gujarat:

Makar Sankranti is one of the most popular festivals in Gujarat, and the state is well-known for its vibrant kite-flying customs. People compete in friendly tournaments to cut each other’s kites while the sky is covered in bright kites. The International Kite Festival, which draws fans of kites from all over the world, is held in Ahmedabad. Other popular treats include Undhiyu, Chikki, and Tilgul, which are traditional Gujarati sweets.

Makar Sankranti Festival Celebration in Maharashtra:

In Maharashtra, Makar Sankranti is also known as Sankrant or Sankranti. The greeting “Tilgul Ghya, God God bola,” which translates to “Accept these sweets and speak sweetly,” is used when individuals share Tilgul, Sesame, and jaggery candies, during this culturally significant holiday. Families join together to make puran poli, a traditional food, and fly kites. Bullock cart races are held as a part of the celebrations in rural communities.

Makar Sankranti Festival Celebration in Punjab:

Makar Sankranti is known as Maghi in Punjab. People go to gurdwaras to worship and take morning showers in rivers. People congregate around lit Lohri bonfires to sing traditional songs and dance in folk styles like Bhangra and Giddha. During the celebration, people eat sweets like Rewri (Revadi) and Gajak, which are composed of jaggery and sesame seeds.

Makar Sankranti Festival Celebration in Tamil Nadu:

Makar Sankranti is a four-day harvest festival in Tamilnadu that is observed there as Pongal. Bhogi, when people burn old items and start bonfires, kicks off the festival. A special dish called Pongal, cooked from recently harvested rice, is prepared and dedicated to the Sun God on the second day, also referred to as Thai Pongal. Mattu Pongal, the third day, is devoted to the adoration of cattle. Kaanum Pongal, the last day, is reserved for family trips and picnics.

Makar Sankranti Festival Celebration in Assam:

Makar Sankranti is observed as either Magh Bihu or Bhogali Bihu in Assam. A harvest and feasting festival in Assam, it lasts seven days. To celebrate, people construct Meji, makeshift huts, and congregate around bonfires. During the event, delicious Assamese fares like Pitha (rice cakes), Laru (sesame and coconut sweets), and various meat dishes are prepared and consumed.

Makar Sankranti Festival Celebration in Rajasthan:

Makar Sankranti is enthusiastically observed in Rajasthan. People fly kites, host kite-flying contests, and engage in kite combat. People savor traditional Sweets like Ghevar and til-patti (sesame brittle) while colorful kites fill the skies. Evenings feature folk dances and musical performances, as well as the lighting of bonfires.

Makar Sankranti Festival Celebration in Uttar Pradesh:

The Makar Sankranti festival is known as “Khichdi” in Uttar Pradesh. In places like Varanasi, people pray to the sun deity while taking a sacred plunge in the Ganga River. Devotees serve unique rice and lentil dishes, particularly khichdi, to the gods. Fairs are held in various areas to display regional artwork, handicrafts, and cultural performances.

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