If you want to learn more about any of these holidays, here is the Wikipedia page on Makar Sankranti which will link you to information about all the different versions of the holiday across South and Southeast Asia.
Saturday, January 15, 2011
Happy Pongal/Makar Sankranti!
A large number of Indian festivals fall on or around this weekend, including Pongal, celebrated in Tamil Nadu in South India and by Tamil people all over the world, and Makar Sankranti, which is celebrated in varying versions in many parts of the country. Most of these are mainly harvest festivals, though many different mythological events and religious observances are connected to the various holidays as well. The following music clip from the somewhat older otherwise rather dark Tamil film Mahanadhi (see its Wikipedia entry here) shows some of the traditions associated with Pongal: