Mrunal Manmay Dash

Makar Sankranti, also called Uttarayana, Makar, or simply Sankranti, is a Hindu observance and festival. As the Sun transitions into Makara Rashi (Capricorn) from Sagittarius (Dhanu), it marks the end of the winter and start of longer days.

The festival is celebrated in many ways in different parts of the Country. What Pongal is to Tamil Nadu, Lohri to Punjab, Bihu or Magh Bihu is to Assam, Makar Sankranti is the same occasion to Odisha.

Also Read | Makar Sankranti 2023: Know Significance and other Rituals Associated with the Festival

On the auspicious occasion, President Droupadi Murmu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other dignitaries conveyed their best wishes to the people.

“Greetings to all on Lohri, Makar Sankranti, Magh Bihu and Pongal. These festivals symbolise India's unity in diversity and are the carriers of our culture. May these festivals bind fellow citizens in bonds of love and harmony and bring happiness and prosperity to all,” wrote President Droupadi Murmu on Twitter.

Prime Minister Narendra Midi conveyed his greetings on this occasion too. Taking to Twitter, Modi wrote, “Greetings on Uttarayan. May there be abundance of joy in our lives.”

Union Home Minister Amit Shah extended his wishes on Magh Bihu in Assamese. He wrote, “I wish you all a very happy Magh Bihu. May the harvest festival of Bhogali bring happiness, peace and prosperity to everyone.”

"The beauty of India lies in its diversity! On this special day when we're celebrating multiple colours of festivals, I extend warm greetings to dear people of our country. Happy Makar Sankranti, Bhogali Bihu, Pongal and Uttarayan. Be blessed with ever-lasting joy and good health,” wrote BJP National VP, Baijayant Panda.

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik also extended wishes on Makar Sankranti, “My best wishes and congratulations to all on the auspicious occasion of Makar Sankranti. Celebrate this festival with joy and happiness. Praying before Lord Jagannath for a happy life for everyone.”

Special rituals are also performed at Lord Jagannath temple in Puri on the occasion of Makar Sankranti. As per the ritual, today, the Trinity will give darshan to the devotees in ‘Makar Chourashi Besha’. Makar Sankranti is one of the 12 jatras of the Holy Trinity, when a special betel (Nali Paan), in fact, world’s largest paan is offered to Lord Jagannath.