Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Saturday offered prayers at Shree Jagannath Temple in Gujarat's Ahmedabad on the occasion of Makar Sankranti.
After offering prayers Shah also fed the temple elephants and later went for the kite flying festival at Vejalpur.
He also visited and offered prayer at Kapileshwar Mahadev Temple located in the Gandhinagar district.
Significance of Makar Sankranti
A prominent festival on the Indian calendar, devotees make offerings to the Hindu deity Surya on Makar Sankranti. The day marks the first day of the sun's transit into the Makara, marking the end of the winter solstice and the start of longer days.
Observed on January 14 every year, the festival is known by various names in different parts of the country such as Pongal, Bihu, and Maghi. Devotees in several parts of the country performed rituals at different ghats.
In Gujarat, the festival is celebrated as Uttarayan as it marks the first day of the sun's transit into the Makara.
Sankranti in Gujarat
The state is well-known for its International Kite Flying Festival. After finishing their morning prayers, people gather on their terraces with colorful kites. The festival has begun! During the kite flying festival, people are often heard shouting "Kai Po Che" to the losing team. Aside from that, people eat delicacies like Chikki, which is made of sesame seeds and peanuts, and Undhiyu, which is made of winter vegetables.
The festivals of Makar Sankranti, Pongal, Bhogali Bihu, Uttarayan mark the harvesting season of crops as the winter season ends and ushers in the spring. People enjoy the fruits of a good harvest and celebrate these festivals which also underline the need to preserve the environment.
Also known to strengthen the bond of friendship, this festival is all about making khichdi, kite flying, sesame sweets, and coconut laddoos. Makar Sankranti marks a message, that the winter season is now clearly, leaving.
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