Why Indians celebrate Makar Sankranti , the festival of Kites?
Makar Sankranti (also known as Maghi) is the festival of flying kites and enjoying eating til-gud(sesame-jaggery) laddu. It is a festival of happiness . Every year Makar Sankranti is celebrated on 14th January. There are many religious concept about why Indians celebrate Makar Sankranti festival. In some Hindu myths it is believed that the God *Suray* (The God of Sun) come to meet his son the god “Shani* (refers to planet Saturn) by himself on this day , and the Shani god himself resemble of the Zodiac, that’s why this day is called Makar Sankranti.
Another popular belief is that in the Mahabharata, the greatest warrior *Bhisma Pitamah* (Gangaputra and Bhishma)waited for the Sun to be Uttaarayn for him to die willingly.
The festival celebrated in many parts of India with some regional variations. It is known by different names and celebrated with different customs in different parts of the region.
In India it is known in different states by different regional names. In Chattisgarh, Goa, Odisha, Haryana, Bihar, Jharkhand, Andra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, West Bengal and Jammu Called as Makar Sankranti.
In Gujarat it is known by “Uttarayan” The people of Gujarat celebrate this festival by going to terrace of their houses and flying kites whenever they dual with another kites and they cut them flying, they all shout. They also celebrate this festival by eating a special dish called *Undhiyu*.
During Makar Sankranti at Gangasagar a lakhs of peoples come to Ganges to take holi dip into offer sesame seeds. Makar Sankranti is a harvest festival and its believe to mark the arrival Spring in India. This festival is famous for flying kites. Makar Sakranti is celebrated as Pongal , Bihu , Khichdi in different part of India.
Every year lakhs of pilgrims gather on the banks the holy river Ganga and Sagar, the confluence of the ocean and the river only to take a holy dip on earth precious occasion of Makar Sankranti.
On Ganga Sagar Island , Where you will see thousands of pilgrims singing and chatting different mantras and with that they also ensuring their enjoying every bit of it. Even its very cold in the morning and they are taking holy dip into the water, daring the cold and of course the weather too. The weather would be around 10 to 12 degree centigrade as per as temperature concern but that doesn’t stop them from taking the holy dip into the confluence of the river Ganges as well as the Ocean.
The number of people who gathered here increasing with every passing hour at the passing hour. Every year almost fifteen lakh peoples are expected to gather here for holy dip in the Ganga. There are icemen security arrangement have been made now it’s also include coast guard as well as others traffic boats have been deployed here. Also Kolkata police help every minute of the crowd here . More than 15 lakhs people are expected now this also means that they will not be staying on the island but they will be ferry from across to the island to the main land.
Makar Sankranti is major festival in Andhra Pradesh. The first day of the festival is bogi and event on massive bonfire at night before sunrise outside the home. Children and elders a like take head bath with soap nut an evening , reggi pallu and small barberries and coins up hold on children to protect them from evil eye.
The second and the main day of the festival is Makar Sankranti which mark the transition of the sun into zodiac sign of makar rashi or Capricorn of its celestial path. Milk rice mixed with jiggery is cooked and offered to the sun god on the day . The Large number of toy mainly made of wood are beautifully arranged and women flocked gather in the evening in an event call Pedda Panduga.
The third day is called Kanuma when cattle worship and firm’s labour are gifted money, new clothes in the on this days. Tradition sports are cock fight are held in the coastal district during this festival.
Meanwhile Andhra Pradesh state govt has declared the Sankranti as state festival . On that various places officials organised special event. In Vijayawada district , people displayed skilled.
Roaster fights traditional sports are common in West Godavari and East Godavari district during Sankranti which add colours to the festival . According to estimate beating on cock fight involves hundred crore to four hundred crore and east Godavari & west Godavari district organiser are keen and conducting the annual event.