Makar Sankranti also known as Makara Sankranti is celebrated as an important festival of India. It is a festival of celestial significance as it marks the transition of the sun into the zodiacal sign of Makara (Capricorn) on its celestial path, which is the first change in the zodiac after the winter solstice and is the first day of the month of Magha. Therefore it is a festival of a new beginning.
The festival is celebrated in various parts of the Indian subcontinent with utmost happiness and zest. People fly kites during the day time and children enjoy the most. Due to a playful nature of the festival, it is also known as the ‘kite flying festival’.
Sankranti is one of the highly auspicious days in a Hindu calendar and the day is dedicated to the worship of Lord Surya (The Sun God). This year, the date of Makar Sankranti is January 14. Thousands of people take a dip in the river Ganga and pray to the Sun God. The Punyakaal Muhurta will start from 7:50 am to 6:02 pm, so the total duration would be of 10 Hours 12 Minutes. While, the Mahapunya Kaal Muhurta will start from 7:50 am to 8:14 am and so the total duration would only be of 24 minutes.
The festival has various regional believes and different regions and their culture celebrate the festival in their own unique ways. In fact, the festival is also popular by different names in different states, such as in Tamil Nadu, the festival is called as ‘Thai Pongal,’ in Gujarat the festival is famous by the name ‘Uttarayan,’ people of Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Punjab call it as ‘Maghi,’ whereas it is known as ‘Khichdi’ in Uttar Pradesh and western Bihar and in West Bengal the festival is named as ‘Poush Sangkranti.’ While in the major part of the country the festival is know by the name ‘Makar Sankranti’ itself.
So with this, wishing all a very Happy Sankranti and Pongal!