New Delhi: Tens of thousands of faithful
today took holy dip in rivers and ponds and offered prayers in
temples on the auspicious occasion of Makar Sankranti which
was celebrated across the country with mirth and fervour.
Braving early morning winter chill, devotees in North
India bathed in sacred rivers and ponds and made a beeline to
temples to offer prayers.
Security forces kept a hawk-eye vigil to maintain law
and order and ward off any attack on religious congregations.
In Allahabad, thousands converged at the Sangam, the
confluence of Ganga, Yamuna and mythical river Saraswati, to
take holy dip on Makar Sankranti which marks the decline of
Long-winding queues of devotees were seen outside
temples in the vicinity of the Sangam and near the banks of
Ganga and Yamuna.
The faithful also offered goods made of "til" (sesame)
to the poor, an act of charity believed to bring spiritual
benefit on Makar Sankranti when the Sun enters the tropic of
At the Sagar Island in West Bengal, over eight lakh
devotess bathed at the confluence of the Ganga and the Bay of
Bengal to celebrate the festival.
Colourful kites dotted the skyline of many cities and
towns on the occasion with children, young and old camping
themselves on roof-tops to enjoy the festival.
In Tamil Nadu, harvest festival Pongal was celebrated
with fervour as farmers worshipped the Sun God with their
Skillfully laid out colourful `kolams` (rangoli) on the
streets and houses decorated with palm leaves and flowers
marked the day as people welcomed the auspicious Tamil month