Sankranti is the Sanskrit word in Indian Astrology which refers to the transmigration of the Sun from one Rāshi (sign of the zodiac) to another. There are 12 such sankrantis in all. However, the Sankranti festival usually refers to Makara Sankaranti, or the transition of the Sun from Dhanur rashi (Sagittarius) to Makara rashi (Capricorn).
Makara Sankranti is one of the most auspicious occasions for the Hindus, and is celebrated in almost all parts of the country in myriad cultural forms, with great devotion, fervour and gaiety. It is a harvest festival. Makara Sankranti is perhaps the only Indian festival whose date always falls on the same day every year on the 14th of January (with just a few exceptions when it is celebrated either on 13th or 15th of January)
Makara Sankranti is the day when the glorious Sun-God begins its ascendancy and entry into the Northern Hemisphere and thus it signifies an event wherein the Sun-God seems to remind their children that ‘Tamaso Ma Jyotir Gamaya’- may you go higher & higher, to more & more Light and never to Darkness.
To Hindus, the Sun stands for knowledge, spiritual light and wisdom. Makara Sankranti signifies that we should turn away from the darkness of delusion in which we live, and begin to enjoy a new life with bright light within us to shine brighter and brighter. We should gradually begin to grow in purity, wisdom, and knowledge, even as the Sun does from the Day of Makara Sankranti.
The festival of Makara Sankranti is highly regarded by the Hindus from North to down South. The day is known by various names and a variety of traditions are witnessed as one explores the festival in different states.
Meethe GUD me mil gaya TIL,
Udi PATANG aur khil gaye DIL,
Jeevan me bani rahe SUKH aur SHANTI,
MUBARAK ho apko MAKAR-SANKRANTI.