The festival dates of January: All you need to know
India is a land of festivals; every little occasion here is celebrated with full zeal and enthusiasm. Right after the New Year celebrations in the month of January, when the cold winter season ends, there occur the warm days with the season of harvest. The month of January offers several reasons to celebrate. Read more to know about the rich diversity, brimming enthusiasm, traditions and vibrant beauty of Indian festivals in January.
Lohri – 13th January 2019
Celebrated in all of North India, Lohri is one of the most enthusiastically celebrated festivals in India. It is basically a harvest festival which is marked by bonfire, music, good food and dance. People from all over India, especially North India are seen spreading the joy of harvest of Rabi crops. In Punjab, people are more excited about the festival. It is marked by eating sheaves of roasted corn which is derived from the new harvest. A traditional sweet dish named “Tricholi” is made by mixing til (sesame seeds), jaggery and rice and eaten on this day. Lohri is usually observed on a night before Makar Sankranti.
What’s special about the festival – This is one of the most celebrated festivals amongst people of North India. They get dressed in new clothes and make themselves comfortable around the bonfire. Eateries like popcorn, gajak, revdi are savored on this day over the beats of Dhol while doing the Bhangra.
Makar Sankranthi – 14th January 2019
Makar Sankranti is celebrated all over India in different ways. It is one of those few Indian festivals which is being observed since ancient times as per the solar cycles, as most of the Hindu festivals are set according to the Lunar Calendar. The festivities associated with the festival are unique and are based on the culture and the traditions. Makar Sankranti holds a special significance in the ancient epic of Mahabharata as since ancient times offerings have been made to the Sun God.
What’s special about the festival – On this day, people fly kites, eat jaggery and make several sweet dishes using ghee and milk. Usually, yellow sweet rice is also made on this day.
Pongal – 15th January to 18th January 2019
Pongal, which is usually observed in South India, is just like Thanksgiving festival in the US. During these four days long festival, people make Rangoli which is known Kolam. The festival is usually celebrated after the winter solstice. On this day, the sun begins its journey towards the Tropic of Capricorn from the Tropic of Cancer. Pongal appears in the Tamil month of Maargzhi. The first day of Pongal festival is known as Bogi, the second day is known as Surya Pongal, the third day is known as Mattu Pongal and the fourth day is known as Kaanum Pongal. The second day is the main day of Pongal which marks the beginning of the Tamil month of Thai. Pongal also marks the end of the cold winters and the advent of spring.
What’s special about the festival – During these days, people give offerings to different gods. The houses and streets are decorated with colorful kolams. An amazing sweet dish which is named Pongal is made using boiled rice, milk and jaggery. Families gets together and dance on some famous tunes during this festival.
Republic Day – 26th January 2019
Republic Day is one of the three national festivals observed in India. The day is celebrated every year in order to acknowledge the formation of the Constitution of India which was founded in 1950. On this day, a spectacular Republic Day parade is organized that marches down to the central Rajpath avenue. All the three Armed Forces of India – Army, Navy and Air Force perform in the parade.
What’s special about the festival – The Republic Day Parade, stunts performed by armed forces, traditional dance troops and displays in the sky are the main attractions.