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Interesting Facts You Did Not Know About Makar Sankranti

  • One of the few Indian festivals that falls on the same day every year according to the Gregorian calender.
  • On Makar Sankranti, the sun enters the sun-sign of Capricorn or Makara (the Indian rashi). Therefore the 'Makar' in the name.
  • This festival is officially the beginning of spring or the onset of Indian summer and the days become longer, and nights shorter.
  • This festival is predominantly a harvest festival and is celebrated throughout India, from north to south and east to west.
  • Makar Sankranti is most popular in West India, down south, the festival is known as Pongal and in the north, it is celebrated as Lohri
  • Uttarayan, Maghi, Khichdi are some other names of the same festival.
  • Makar Sankranti is the festival of til-gul where sesame and jaggery laddoos or chikkis are distributed among all.
  • The festival falls in winter, eating of sesame and jaggery is considered beneficial to health as they are warm foods.
  • Since winter is also the time of a lot of infections and sickness, by basking in the sun, Hindus believed that the bad bacteria on their bodies would be cleared
  • Makar Sankranti generally marks the beginning of the Kumbh Mela in Uttar Pradesh
  • While in South India, in Kerala, one of the most austere and difficult pilgrimages of Shabrimala ends on this auspicious day
  • Other parts of the country too, celebrate by taking a dip in the holy rivers flowing through states to cleanse themselves of sins.

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