Pongal 2020 in India: Date, Significance and How it is Celebrated

Pongal 2020: Festival Date, Significance, History and How it is Celebrated

2 min read
Pongal 2020 Festival Date, Significance, History and How it is Celebrated

In the year 2020, the festival of Pongal will be celebrated from 15-18 January. This festival is especially observed and celebrated with great enthusiasm in south India, mostly in Tamil Nadu. Pongal is a four-day-long harvest festival and is known by different names in various parts of the country.

This festival also marks Uttarayan, which indicates the Sun’s movement towards the north. This festival usually falls in the month of January when crops like rice, turmeric, and sugarcane are harvested. The word Pongal means ‘spilling over’ and hence on this festival people follow a tradition of boiling the rice in an earthen pot till it overflows. This festival is mostly observed in Tamil Nadu and is also referred to as ‘Thai Pongal’.

This festival marks the reaping of the harvest. Pongal is known by different names in different states such as in Northeast it is known by the name of ‘Bhogali Bihu’, ‘Lohri ‘ in Punjab, ‘Bhogi ‘ in Andra Pradesh and ‘Makar Sakranti’ in Karnataka, Bengal, UP, Bihar etc.

When Will Pongal 2020 be Celebrated?

This year this four-day-long festival (Pongal) will be celebrated from Wednesday 15 January till Saturday 18 January.

  1. 15 January 2020 – Bhogi Pongal
  2. 16 January 2020 – Surya Pongal
  3. 17 January 2020 – Mattu Pongal
  4. 18 January 2020 – Kanum Pongal

How is Pongal Celebrated?

The first day of Pongal is celebrated as Bhogi Pongal followed by Surya Pongal, Mattu Pongal and Kanum Pongal. Check below the significance of the four days of Pongal festival below:

Bhogi Pongal

The first day of Pongal is known as Bhogi Pongal. People worship Lord Indra ,‘The God of Rain’. On this day, people offer prayers to the Rain God as rain is key for a good harvest. The day is followed by bonfires with people singing, dancing and celebrating the beginning of this auspicious festival.

Surya Pongal

Surya Pongal is celebrated on the second day of the Pongal festival in which Lord Surya is worshipped. On this day the traditional boiling of rice in earthen pots is observed and dry fruits and jaggery are also used afterwards to prepare a sweet dish out of it. As per traditions, women wear white clothes and make Kolam (Rangoli).

Mattu Pongal

Mattu Pongal is celebrated on the third day of the Pongal festival where cow worshipping is observed by the people. Bells are tied around their necks and they are worshipped. Cattle races are also witnessed on Mattu Pongal which are known by the name of Jallikattu.

Kanum Pongal

Kanum Pongal is celebrated on the last day of Pongal. On this day, the women are seen praying for the well-being and prosperity of their family and receive the blessings of the Sun God. The Pongal festival is concluded by offering sugarcane stalks with dried turmeric leaves and various types of rice as offerings to the god.

On this auspicious festival, people cook various special recipes like Ven Pongal, Sakkarai Pongal, Chackra Pongal, Sweet Pongal and Rava Pongal.

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