Makar Sankranti is an Indian festival celebrated at Magh( name of a month) 1st of Hindu Solar calendar. It denotes the transition of the Sun into Capricorn (Makara Rashi) on its celestial path, and the six-month Uttarayana period. Hence this is also known as Uttarayana – the day on which the sun begins his journey towards the Northern Hemisphere.
As it is a solar event, it is one of the few Hindu festivals which occur on the same date in local calendars every year: 14 January, with some exceptions it is celebrated on 15 January as well. This time is believed to be of peace and prosperity.
On this day, people usually take a holy dip in rivers, especially Ganga, Yamuna, Godavari, Krishna and Kaveri with the belief that past sins would be washed away. On this day Sun God is worshipped and thanked for successes and prosperity. Some other rituals associated to this festival include chanting mantra, flying kites etc. It is celebrated in all Hindu households across India.
However, the names of festivals vary widely in different parts of the country. For example, it is known as Makara Sankranti in Karnataka, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh states, Magh Bihu in Assam, Pongal in Tamil Nadu, Magha Mela in parts of central and north India, Makar Sankranti in the west etc
In Indian we celebrate this first festival of the year with multi-coloured kites filling the morning sky, and delicious desserts on their plates. Some of the popular dishes are fini, chikki, til laddu, dried fruit gajak, halwa and various types of pithas.