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Sankranthi Begins With Bonfires In AP, Telangana

Towns and villages in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana came alive as the three-day Sankranthi celebrations kicked off today with "Bhogi mantalu".
Hyderabad | 14th January 2019
Towns and villages in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana came alive as the three-day Sankranthi celebrations kicked off today with "Bhogi mantalu" including the burning of old and unwanted items like old clothes, mats and broom sticks by people in the belief that new items would enter their lives.

Men, women and children gathered around the bonfires, which also provided relief to them from the chilly weather. Many sang and danced around the fires, too.

A festive atmosphere prevailed in the residential colonies of the metropolis Hyderabad and its outskirts, too. Other cities including Vijayawada, Guntur and Visakhapatnam witnessed similar scenes of bucolic celebration. The day began with the womenfolk cleaning their houses and decorating the entrances with intricate rangoli designs. They also created Gobbemmalu (cow-dung balls) and placed fresh harvests of rice, turmeric and sugarcane. The houses were decorated with marigold flowers and mango leaves. After offering prayers in temples, the families prepared various dishes, especially Pongal, made of rice and daal.

Haridasulu and Basavannas, the uniquely attired alms-seekers with ornately decorated oxen, made rounds of the villages. Decoration of bulls, cock fights, bull fights and other rural sports marked the celebrations. Youths also took to flying kites.

Several lakh people employed in Hyderabad headed for their homes in the various districts of both the states. The Telangana government waived off the toll fees on the highways to prevent traffic jams at toll plazas and enable people to reach their destinations on time. The Andhra Pradesh government too waived off the toll fees on commuters heading for their native places for the festival. Many Telugu people working abroad also came down to visit their families.

The railways operated extra trains and the bus corporations in both the states operated additional bus services to clear the holiday rush.
filed in:  Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Sankranti, Celebrations, Festivals
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