Makar Sankranti – Ghugutia

According to the Hindu religious texts, on the day of Uttarayani, the sun enters the Zodiacal sign of ‘Makar’ (Capricon) from the Zodiacal sign of the Kark (Cancer), i.e. from this day onwards the sun becomes ‘Uttarayan’ or it starts moving to the north. It is said that from this day, which signals a change of season, the migratory birds start returning to the hills. On Makar Sankranti people give Khichadi (a mixture of pulses and rice) in charity, take ceremonial dips in holy rivers, participate in the Uttarayani fairs and celebrate the festival of Ghughutia or Kale Kauva. During the festival of Kale Kauva (literal translation ‘black crow’) people make sweetmeats out of sweetened flour (flour and gur) deep fried in ghee, shape them like drums, pomegranates, knives, swords etc. They are strung togather and worn as necklace-in the middle of which an oragne in fixed. Early in the morning children wear these necklaces and sing “Kale Kauva..” to attract crows and other birds and offer them portions of these necklaces, as a token of welcome for all the migratory birds, who are now coming back after their winter sojourn in the plains.

Wearing garlands of the above eatables the children come out calling the crows with following song on their lips:

Kale Kale, bhol bate aile
bor puwa Khale
Ie Kauva bara, mai ke de sunu gharo
Ie Kauva dhal, mai ke de sunu thai.

(come dear crow, come daily
you will enjoy eating bara and puwa.
Take the bara and give me a pitcher full of gold Take the shield and give me a golden plate).

Leave a Reply