Makar Sankranti Celebrations in Andhra Pradesh
Makar Sankranti is a pedda panduga the main festival for the people in rural Andhra Pradesh. The Sankranti festival falls on the second day of three day festival. On this second day of Sankranti festival called as pongal prayers are offered to Goddess Laxmi and worship cattle. On this day food and new clothes are offered to departed souls as a mark of respect.
Many traditional dishes will be prepared on the day of Sankranti such as: Arisalu, Pulihora, Pongali,boorelu, garelu etc.
The most important and entertaining sights during Sankranthi are Gangireddu, Haridaasu and Buda-Budakkulavadu, Jangamdevara, Puliveshaalu. Kodi Pandaalu or Cock fighting is popularly known as a rural sport that involves betting on the fight between two cocks. It is very popular in the villages of Andhra Pradesh. People train the cocks and bet on them. Specially reared birds try to claw out their opponents with their knife bound feet.
Another important aspect of Sankranti festival celebration in Andhra Pradesh is ‘bommala koluvu’, the display of various dolls and toys. A variety of dolls are arranged beautifully in a selected place of the house and displayed to all the guests who come to see it.
Since this is a ladies function, in the evening all the neighborhood ladies are invited to the koluvu to spend time together. This is called ‘Perantam’. Young girls apply turmeric paste to the feet of women and offer them ‘vayanam’, which consists of beetle leaves, nut-powder and soaked chana (sanagalu).
The newly wedded couple the new son-in-laws’ and daughters receive great respect and courtesy in the parent-in-laws house during Sankranti festival.