Thai Pongal Festival
It is a major religious festival of the Hindus.Thai Pongal has been celebrated for over 1,000 years. All the Tamil people in our country celebrate this festival.It starts on the first day of Thai on the traditional Tamil calendar, which usually falls in mid January, and marks the start of the sun’s six month journey northbound. According to the Tamil New Year system, the name Thai is used for the month of January. Pongal is the process of putting fresh rice in a new bowl and pouring milk over it.Sri Lankan’s tend to keep the festivities limited to two days. During the first day of Thai Pongal, families decorate their homes with banana leaves and colourful kolam patterns made with rice flour and boil rice in milk along with spices, nuts and raisins to share with locals. First, before the ceremony, the floor is cleaned and a pandal is made of two banana trees to connect to the main entrance.Then, In the middle of the cleaned floor, they create patterns [rangoli]from yellow powder and rice flour. In the middle of it, a stove is built and milk rice is cooked and an offering is made.They share Pongal rice with neighbors. On the second day, the cattle that help farmers in their rice fields are honoured by being bathed, painted with coloured dyes and given beautiful garlands that hang around their neck and horns.