Sankranti: Celebrating Harvest Season and Farmers

Sankranti and Harvest Season
Aspect Description
Significance for Farmers
Sankranti, also known as Makar Sankranti or Pongal in some regions, marks the transition of the Sun into the zodiac sign of Capricorn (Makara). This festival coincides with the beginning of the harvest season, which is of immense significance to farmers. It is a time to celebrate the fruits of their labor, as crops like rice, sugarcane, and turmeric are typically harvested around this time. The festival symbolizes prosperity, happiness, and a time to be thankful for the bountiful harvest.
Celebration by Farmers
Farmers celebrate Sankranti with great enthusiasm and joy. They decorate their homes and cattle, cook and share traditional foods, and participate in various cultural activities. In many regions, farmers prepare sweets made from jaggery and sesame seeds, symbolizing togetherness and sweetness in life. They also engage in kite flying, bonfires, and fairs. Cattle are honored with baths and parades, as they play a crucial role in agriculture. The festival is a time for socializing and expressing gratitude to nature and the divine.
Harvest Season
The harvest season is a critical period for farmers as it determines their livelihood for the year. It is the time when all the hard work of planting, nurturing, and protecting crops comes to fruition. The timing of Sankranti, which usually falls in mid-January, is perfect as it marks the end of the winter solstice and the start of longer days, which is favorable for the crops. The harvest season varies across different regions and crops, but Sankranti generally signifies the peak of the harvesting period in many parts of India.
Sankranti Festival
Sankranti is a pan-Indian solar festival known by various names across the country. It is celebrated with distinct customs and traditions in different regions. While it is called Makar Sankranti in the western and northern parts of India, it is celebrated as Pongal in Tamil Nadu, Magh Bihu in Assam, and Makara Vilakku in Kerala. Despite the varied customs, the essence of the festival remains the same � to mark the end of winter and the arrival of spring, and to rejoice in the successful harvest that sustains communities.

Welcome Sankranti

Traditional cards for Makar Sankranti

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Modern art card showing spirit of Sankranti