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Festivals of harvest – Makar Sankranti, Pongal, Uttarayan and Magh Bihu being celebrated in different parts of country

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Festivals of harvest – Makar Sankranti, Pongal, Uttarayan and Magh Bihu are being celebrated in different parts of the country today. These festivals mark the end of winter and the onset of longer days. These festivals are celebrated with cultural diversity, featuring traditions like kite flying, bonfires, and delightful feasts across the country.
 
In Tamil Nadu, Thai Pongal, as it is called is the beginning of the Tamil month Thai, which is celebrated by Tamils living all over the World. The season is celebrated for three days. Today the people offer their harvest to the Sun in the morning. More from our correspondent:

Today is the beginning of Thai month and Tamils celebrate the harvest by offering their food to the Sun and also to the cattle, especially the bulls which help the farmers in ploughing the fields. Sugarcane pandals, colourful rangolis mango leaf festoons and painted clay pots make the day very special in villages.

Pongal is synonymous with overflowing. The menu is cooked with raw rice, jaggery, milk, moong dal and ghee. It is cooked in pots so that it overflows and the members of the family shout Pongalo Pongal. Thai  Piranthaal Vazhi Pirakkum is an old saying which means the birth of this month will make a way for things to be accomplished.

Tomorrow is Mattu Pongal for the cattle where the horns of the bulls are tied with new bells and colourful festoons to give additional jingles to them when they are being taken for a jolly ride through the villages. The last day of the Pongal season is Kaanum Pongal where people visit their relatives and spend time together. Pongal is also the season of new blockbusters and Jallikattu in villages.

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