Magh Sankranti

Magh Sankranti

Usually around January 14; Hindu month of Magha
In celebration of the sun's movement back toward the Northern Hemisphere, people in Nepal visit holy bathing spots during this festival in the Hindu month of Magha. Some actually bathe in the shallow water, but the weather is usually quite chilly and most are content to splash water on their hands and faces and sprinkle it on their heads. People also spend the day sitting in the sun, massaging each other with mustard oil, which is also used by mothers to bless their children. Foods traditionally served on this day include khichari, a mixture of rice and lentils; sesame seeds; sweet potatoes; spinach; and home-made wine and beer. Traditional gifts for the priests are a bundle of wood and a clay fire pot.
This holiday is also celebrated all over India, where it is called Makar Sankranti or, in some parts of India, Lohri.
CONTACTS:
Ministry of Tourism, Government of India
Rm. No 123, Transport Bhawan, No. 1, Parliament St.
New Delhi, Delhi 110 001 India
91-11-23715084; fax: 91-11-23715084
www.tourisminindia.com
SOURCES:
CelebFestIndia-1994, p. 35
FolkWrldHol-1999, p. 35
RelHolCal-2004, p. 181
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