Modi greets nation on Makar Sankranti, Pongal, Lohri

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Makar Sankranti festival is also an occasion to revitalize our lives through prayers and reverence for rivers and all living beings.

In south Indian states have a sizable number of Tamilians.

MILLIONS of Hindus have been anticipating the festival of Makar Sankranti - and the big day is here! Many people also wear black garments on this day.

India known for its traditions, festivals and culture, is indeed a land of diversity.

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Actress Hema Malini shared multiple pictures of the different festivals and wrote, "Festive season coming up!" From this festival, days become longer, also auspicious rituals and ceremonies start being performed. People in North India celebrate the day with Khichri, while in Tamil Nadu, Sankranti is known by the name of "Pongal".

A traditional Maharashtrian celebration includes exchange of til gul laddoo (sweets made of sesame seeds and jaggery) and puran poli (a sweet flatbread) as a gesture of goodwill. The bathing is believed to result in merit or absolution of past sins. Pongal festival is a thanksgiving ceremony in which the farmers celebrate the event to thank the nature spirit, the Sun God and the farm animals for their assistance in providing a successful harvest. Makar Sankranti is popular for sesame candies and kites, as this auspicious day marks the arrival of spring in India.

It marks the end of the month with the winter solstice and the darkest night of the year, a month that is called Pausha in the lunar system and Dhanu is the solar system of Hindu time keeping methodology. Temperatures start rising after the festival, leading to hotter days.

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