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Makar Sankranti- Festival of benevolence and gratitude

Another colorful festival from the plethora of wonderful Indian festivals, Makar Sankranti, is a festival of a new beginning and a new life. Also celebrated as Pongal in Tamil Nadu, Lohri in Punjab, Bihu in Assam and Uttarayan in Gujarat, it holds phenomenal importance for Hindus. Largely celebrated as the harvest festival, Makar Sankranti is a celebration to welcome the spring and bid goodbye to the cold waves.


                                     

I reminisce celebrating the festival traditionally with my grandmother.    The small “matkis” which  contained assorted vegetables symbolized the magnanimity of nature. And the delicacies made of till (sesame) and gud (jaggery) were generously shared with loved ones and neighbors. Otherwise avoided as being inauspicious, everybody specially wore black color clothes on Sankranti to ward off evil. I remember playing “gilli danda” and flying kites the whole day.

Now that families are scattered in different parts of the world, IT comes to our rescue. Like many other festival wishes, we would be sharing sankranti wishes of “till gud ghya ani god god bola” (Share sweets and goodwill) through IT enabled gadgets. However, there would not be much change in celebrations at home. Though the traditional style of worshipping “matkis” may be missing, there would be no dearth of delicacies and fun on the colorful festival. The house is already stocked with colorful kites and plans are being made for the kite flying session. And the kitchen is filled with the delicious aroma of jiggery and “till”. The TV and video games would take a back seat today as we fill the sky with colorful kites and our hearts with love and gratitude

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