Rising coronavirus cases don’t deter festivities

From decorating homes to flying kites, townspeople celebrate the occasion with enthusiasm

The celebration of Sankranti, the festival of sun and harvest, has stirred the spirits of the townspeople who are unaffected by the increase in coronavirus infection cases here.

Colorful rangolis embellished with marigold flowers, pieces of sugar cane and balls of cow dung (gobbemmas) adorned the roads and paths in front of homes, apartment complexes and commercial establishments, which witnessed the traditional bonfires on the occasion of Bhogi the day before.

Households were cleared of wood and other waste that was used to light the bonfires, in a symbolic gesture of a new beginning.

Mango leaves were tied to the facades of houses, in anticipation of good fortune. The devotees made a customary visit to the temples.

Traditional delicacies such as ‘Chakkera Pongal’, ‘Ariselu’ and ‘Sakkinalu’ were prepared. Confectioneries did well that day, with Sankranti specialties flying off the shelves.

Children and young people had a gala evening during the holidays, painting the sky with colorful kites. On the other hand, broken and abandoned kites were stuck in power lines, causing frequent power outages throughout the city, while wires (manjas) on the roads impeded the passage of vehicles and pedestrians.

Although absent in most areas, professional beggars such as ‘Haridasu’ and ‘Gangireddula Dasari’ with trimmed bulls were visible on the fringes of the city, seeking alms.

Toddlers and children were blessed with being sprinkled with seasonal berries (Regu fruits) to ward off the evil eye.

According to tradition, a few women held “Bommala Koluvu” (toy arrangement) gatherings at home.

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