Friday, 13 January 2017

Winter Harvest Festivals are here!

New year, new vigor and new hopes, season of festivities begins in the country with myriad colors of harvest festival on Thursday. Season of new harvest is celebrated across the country with great fervor and enthusiasm and it officially marks the end of winter by the Indian calendar. Each state welcomes the season with its unique culture and love. We wish all of you enjoy the festival that begins today in the same flavor as we enjoyed sharing its uniqueness below—

Lohri is celebrated to mark the end of the winters, and is traditionally associated with harvest of the Rabi crops. Lohri is seen as a harvest festival, and thus Punjabi farmers see the day after Lohri (Maghi) as the financial New Year.

Lohri is a festival dedicated to fire and the sun god. It is the time when the sun transits the zodiac sign Makar (Capricorn), and moves towards the north. Rewri, peanuts and pop corns are the three munchies associated with this festival. It is also traditional to eat 'til rice'--sweet rice made with jaggery (gur) and sesame seeds.

Makar Sankranti
The country will also be celebrating Makar Sankranti which is tomorrow, January 14.

Also known as Makara Sankranti, it is celebrated in various parts of the country. This festival marks the shift of the sun into longer days. This is celebrated as the harvest festival in North and west India, down south, the festival is known as Pongal and in the north also celebrated as Lohri. Uttarayan, Maghi, Khichdi are some other names of the same festival.
Makar Sankranti is believed to be a time for peace and wellness. The day is regarded as important and has spiritual values because of which people take a holy dip in rivers.

Magh Bihu or Bhogali Bihu

Magh Bihu or Bhogali Bihu, is the harvest festival of the state of Assam and is observed in the Assamese month of Magh (January). It is a two-day festival dedicated to Lord Agni, the Hindu fire god.

Thai Pongal is a Tamil harvest festival. Thai is the first month of the Tamil Almanac, and Pongal is a dish of sweet concoction of rice, moong dal, jaggery and milk. Thai Pongal is a four-day festival which according to the Gregorian calendar is normally celebrated from January 14 to January 16. This corresponds to the last day of the Tamil month Maargazhi to the third day of the Tamil month Thai.

The day marks the start of the sun’s six-month-long journey northwards (the Uttaraayanam). This also corresponds to the Indic solstice when the sun purportedly enters the 10th house of the Indian zodiac Makara or Capricorn. Thai Pongal is mainly celebrated to convey appreciation to the Sun God for providing the energy for agriculture. Part of the celebration is the boiling of the first rice of the season consecrated to the Sun - the Surya Maangalyam.

All India Radio- Akashvani wishes all its listeners peace and prosperity in this festive season.

Payal Choudhary

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