Makar Sankranti is celebrated on 14 January every year. It also marks the termination of the Winter season and the beginning of a new harvest season.
Tamil Nadu also celebrates Pongal at the same time and Punjab also celebrates Lohri at the same time. While this is the time for harvest festivals of all the different states, true to India’s diverse traditions, each one has its own customs and practices.
‘Makara’ means ‘Capricorn’. The movement of the sun into ‘Makara Raashi’ or the ‘zodiac of Capricorn’ is called Makar Sankranti. It is dedicated to Lord Sun.. On this auspicious day, the sun enters the zodiac sign of Capricorn or Makar which marks the end of winter month and start of longer days.
As it is the harvest festival, it is a time of joy, abundance, and celebration in the farming communities, the time when they reap the fruits of their hard labor.
From the day of Makar Sankranti, the sun begins its northward journey or Uttarayan journey. Therefore, this festival is also known as Uttarayan.
n some regions, it is believed that Sankranti is a deity and she killed Sankarasur. The day after, the deity killed another asura (demon) called Kinkarasur. This is why this day is known as Kinkrant.
Since Makar Sankranti is celebrated in different states, there are different traditions in each state.