The Pongal Harvest Festival is a traditional Indian festival that gives thanks to the sun god for a bountiful harvest.
Mostly celebrated in India, Pongal is also celebrated in Singapore because of the large number of Tamil people living here.
Pongal Harvest Festival 2018 – Dates & Locations, Singapore
The Pongal Harvest Festival precedes the start of the tenth month of the Tamil calendar and generally falls in mid-January. During the celebration, people participate in thanksgiving ceremonies, cooking and many other rituals.
The eve of this day is called called Bhogi Pongal which is a day that is set aside for spring cleaning and throwing out new belongings. This is thought to leave the past behind and bring in a new, positive era ahead.
The Pongal Harvest Festival in Singapore has four important days of celebration. The first day is Bhogi Pongal; this is a day set aside for Lord Indra. It is aimed exclusively for the household and symbolises a start to the New Year. The second day is dedicated to Lord Surya where each family cooks a pot of rice with milk to offer to Surya at dawn. The third day called Mattu Pongal is a day for honouring cattle. They do most of the work during harvesting and because they produce milk, locals treat the cattle with the utmost respect.
The fourth day of Pongal in Singapore is Kannum Pongal. This is a day where people visit one another with the young paying tribute to older generations. The local Tamil population considers this a cultural arrangement where they perform, do shows and exhibits to honour their culture and tradition.
For the festival, head down to Campbell Lane in Little India and explore the unique festivities and daily performances held here.