Makar Sankranti – A Grand Celebration

Makar Sankranti or Poush Sankranti is a special celebration of Bengali culture.  It is celebrated on the last day of the Bengali month of Poush in Bangladesh and West Bengal, India. Different types of rituals are arranged in different places centering on this celebration. Eating pitha and flying kites (also a part of Vishwakarma Puja) are very important rituals of this festival.  After flying kites all day, the festival ends in the evening by blowing fireworks or lanterns.  So, this festival or Utsav is also known as Pithe-Puli Utsav. Truly speaking, Makar Sankranti or Poush Sankranti is a grand celebration of Bengal.

According to Indian astrology, ‘Sankranti’ is a Sanskrit word, meaning to move from one sign of the Sun to another.  The word ‘Makar’ (Capricorn) refers to the entry of the Sun into Capricorn from its own orbit. 

[To read the myth associated with Makar Sankranti, visit-https://hindutempletalk.org/2020/01/24/significance-of-makar-sankranti/]

In Bangladesh and West Bengal, the festival of new crops ‘Poush Parvan‘ is celebrated mainly on Makar Sankranti or Poush Sankranti.  A variety of traditional pithas are made with rice flour, date molasses, coconut, milk etc.   Makar Sankranti is known in Indian culture as the ‘beginning of Uttarayan‘ in addition to the festival of new crops. It marks the end of the evil period, which, according to the calendar, begins in mid-January.  On this day, on the occasion of Makar Sankranti, a holy bath is held at Sagardwip in the South 24 Parganas district at the center of Kapil Muni Ashram.  Thousands of devotees and visitors from other states of India gather at this fair. In Bangladesh a very popular Makar Sankranti Mela  is arranged at Apra in the district of Jashore. Hundreds of devotees and tourists from home and abroad throng this fair.

By Krishna Das

[Last Updated:08 January, 2023]

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Krishna Das is an experienced article writer. He writes about Hinduism in his spare time.

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