Religious fervour, gaiety mark Pongal celebrations in TN


Chennai, Jan 14 (UNI) Pongal, the traditional harvest festival, was celebrated in Tamil Nadu with religious fervour and gaiety.
The festival falls on the first day of the auspicious Tamil month 'Thai' every year and people ushered in the festivities with a lot of enthusiasm by worshipping the Sun God.
People attired in new clothes, prepared sweet pongal, a traditional dish made of rice, dhal, jaggery and milk  and offered it to Sun god as a mark of thanks by farmers for a bountiful season. 
It was celebrated with much fanfare in rural areas where people decorated their courtyards with colourful rangolis and tied festoons and prepared the Pongal in the traditional earthern pot.

Thai Pongal is mainly celebrated to convey appreciation to the Sun God for providing the energy for agriculture. 
However, the festival was a low-key affair across the State  in view of the COVID pandemic.
in southern districts, it was time for celebrations as the  traditional Jallikattu (taming of bulls), usually associated  with the Pongal, was held with much fanfare by adhering to the COVID guidelines issued by the government. 
Special poojas were performed in all the temples to mark the occasion. However, in view of the rising COVID cases 
and taking into account that a large number of people would visit the temples, the state government has banned public entry into temples and all places of worship for five days-- from today till January 18.
Tamil Nadu Governor R N Ravi, Chief Minister M K Stalin, AIADMK leaders O Panneerselvam and Edapadi Palaniswami 
and leaders of various political parties greeted the people on the occasion.