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nghq;fy; jkpo;g; Gj;jhz;L 2034 tpoh

cyfj; jkpo;g; gilg;ghspfs; fofk; jkpo;g; Gj;jhz;L 2034 kw;Wk; ijg; nghq;fy; tpohit fdlh KUfd; Nfhapy; muq;fpy; rPNuhLk; rpwg;NghLk; jhaf kz;thridNahLk; tPl;L epidNthLk; Nfhyhfykhff; nfhz;lhbaJ. tpoh muq;F Foe;ijfs; cl;gl kf;fs; nts;sj;jpdhy; epuk;gp tope;jJ. tpoh ehs; Ntiy ehs;vd;whYk; kf;fspd; vOr;rpf;Fk; MHtj;Jf;Fk; mJ mizahf ,Uf;ftpy;iy. Vd; fdlhtpd; ij khjf; fLq;FspH $lj; jilahf ,Uf;ftpy;iy!

fle;j fhyq;fspy; nghq;fy; tpohf;fs; nfhz;lhlg;gl;lhYk; jkpo;g; Gj;jhz;L tpoh nfhz;lhlg;gl;lJ ,JNt Kjy; jlit.

jkpoDf;Fj; jd; ,dk;> jd; nkhop> jd; gz;ghL> jd; khdk; ,itgw;wpg; Nghjpa czHT ,y;yhky; ,Ug;gJjhd; mtd; jho;Tf;F Kf;fpa fhuzk; vd;gijf; fz;lwpe;j kiwkiy mbfshUk;> ngupahUk; mz;zhTk; njhlf;fp itj;j gz;ghl;Lg; Gul;rpapd; FwpaPLjhd; jkpo;g; Gj;jhz;L kw;Wk; nghq;fy; tpoh MFk;.

nghq;fy; Kw;wpYk; fsdp jpUj;jp> cOJ> tpijj;J> fis vLj;J ciog;gpd; gaid mWtil nra;j cotHfs; me;j mWtilf;F mr;rhzpahf ,Ue;j QhapWf;F ed;wp nrhy;Yhk; ,aw;if topghlhFk;.

cz;ikapy; ,d;W jkpoHfSf;F cupa Njrpa tpoh vd;W nrhy;yj;jf;f tz;zk; ,Ug;gJ nghq;fy; tpoh xd;Wjhd;.

,ilf; fhyj;jpy; coTj; njhopiy ,opthd njhopy; vdr; rpj;jupf;Fk; Nehf;NfhL kD];kpUjp Kjyhd itjpf rhj;jpuq;fs; gpwg;ghy; Nky;rhjp vd;Dk; gpuhkzHfs; Vio vspa ciog;ghsp kf;fs; (#j;jpuH) nra;Ak; coTj; njhopiyr; nra;ayhfhJ vd;W tpjp nra;jd.

jhafj;jpy; nghq;fy; nghq;FtJNghy GJg; ( kz;) ghidapy; ghy;> Gj;juprp> fw;fz;L> rHf;fiu> Ke;jpup> fRf;nfhl;il> Vyk; vy;yhk; Nghl;L nghq;fy; nghq;fg;gl;lJ. nghq;fy; ghid ntspehl;by; ,Ue;J ,e;j tpohtpw;fhf ,wf;Fkjp nra;ag;gl;lJ.

nghq;fy; ele;j ,lj;jpy; ge;jy; Nghlg;gl;L khtpiyfspdhYk; Njhuzq;fspdhYk; khiyfspdhYk; fUk;Gj; jz;LfspdhYk; myq;fupf;fg;gl;bUe;jJ. Kw;wj;jpy; Nfhyk; NghLtJNghy; khf; Nfhyk; Nghlg;gl;bUe;jJ. fyg;ig> kz;ntl;b> ghid fhl;rpf;F itf;fg;gl;bUe;jd.

vkJ ,isa jiyKiwapdH jkpo;g; gz;ghl;bd; FwpaPlhd nghq;fy; gw;wpa czHitAk; nghUisAk; mwpe;J nfhs;Sk; tha;g;ghf ,g; nghq;fy; nghq;fg;gl;lJ.

Gyk;ngaHe;J tpj;jpahrkhd R+oypy; jkpoHfs; tho;e;jhYk; nghq;fy; jkpo;g; Gj;jhz;Lj; jpUehisg; ngU tpohthff; nfhz;lhLtjd; %yk; vq;fsJ nkhop> fiy> gz;ghL kw;Wk; ghuk;gupaq;fis ehk; Nghw;wpAk; fhg;ghw;wpAk; tu KbAk;.

jkpoHfSf;F vd xU jdpj;Jtkhd njhlH Mz;L ,y;yhky; ,Ue;J te;jJ ngupa Fiwahf ,Ue;jJ. tuyhw;W epfo;Tfis Mq;fpy njhlH Mz;LNghy; gjpa Kbahjjhy; murHfs;> GytHfsH gw;wpa fhyf; fzpg;ig ruptuf; fzpf;f Kbatpy;iy.

,g;NghJ tof;fpy; ,Uf;Fk; ""gpugt"" Kjy; ""ml;ra"" 60 Mz;Lg; ngaHfs; rhypthfdd; vd;w murdhy; fp.gp. 78,y; mwpKfg; gLj;jg;gl;lit MFk;. ,it tlGy murdhy; Vw;gl;ljhy; tlnkhopg; ngaHfs; toq;fg;glyhapw;W. xd;NwDk; jkpo;g; ngaH my;y. NkYk; Mz;Lfspd; ngaHfs; jkpoHf;F ngUik Njbj; jUtjhfTk; ,y;iy. rpy Mz;LfSf;F Rf;fpy> tpNuhjp> Jd;kjp Nghd;w mkq;fyg; ngaHfs; #lg;gl;Ls;sd.

,e;jr; Row;rp Mz;L Kiwahy; jkpoH nkhop> kuG> khdk;> gz;ghL> tho;T Kjypatw;wpw;F tpise;j mopitAk;> ,opitAk;> fhy ,lHg;ghLfisAk; vz;zpg; ghHj;j jkpo; mwpQHfs;> GytHfs;> rhd;NwhHfs; 1921- Mk; Mz;L nrd;idg; gr;irag;gd; fy;Yhupapy; jkpo;f; fly; kiwkiy mbfs; jiyikapy; $b khw;W eltbf;ifgw;wp Muha;e;jhHfs;.

jpUts;StH fpwpj;J gpwg;gjw;F 31 Mz;Lfs; Kd;G gpwe;jtH vd;W epHzak; nra;ag;gl;L mtH ngaupy; njhlH Mz;ilg; gpd;gw;WtnjdTk; mJNt jkpo;g; Gj;jhz;lhff; nfhs;tnjdTk; KbT nra;ag;gl;lJ.

Mq;fpy Mz;Lld; 31iaf; $l;bdhy; ts;Stuhz;L tUk;. ,g;NghJ Mq;fpy Mz;L 2003. vdNt ts;Stuhz;L 2034 (2003 rf 31) MFk;.

vdNt jpUts;StH Mz;Lj; njhlf;fk; ijg; nghq;fy; jpUehshd ij Kjy; ehs; njhlq;fp khHfopf; filrpapy; KbTWfpwJ.

jkpo;ehL muR jpUts;StH Mz;L Kiwia Vw;W 1971 Kjy; mur ehl;Fwpg;gpYk;> 1972 Kjy; jkpo;ehL murpjopYk; 1981 Kjy; jkpo;ehL murpd; midj;J mYtyq;fspYk; eil Kiwg;gLj;jp tUfpwJ.

ij Kjy; ehNs nghq;fy; tpohthfTk; jkpo;g; Gj;jhz;L gpwf;Fk; ehshfTk;> jpUts;StH Mz;bd; njhlf;f ehshfTk; jkpo;ehL KOJk; nfhz;lhlg; gl;L tUfpwJ. ij Kjy;ehSk; mLj;j ehSk; jkpo;ehl;by; tpLKiw ehl;fshFk;.

jkpoPo epoy; muRk; ij Kjy; ehisNa jkpo;g; Gj;jhz;bd; njhlf;fkhff; nfhs;fpd;wJ vd;gjw;F tpLjiyg; Gypfspd; fiy> ,yf;fpa ,johd 'ntspr;rk;' ,jo; MrpupaH 'Kof;fk;' fpoik Vl;Lf;F mDg;gp itj;j tho;;j;Jr; nra;jp cWjpgLj;JfpwJ.

NkYk; jkpo;g; Gj;jhz;L tpoh 2034 nghq;fy; tpoh ,uz;Lk; jhafj;jpYk; Gyk;ngaHe;j ehLfspYk; rpwg;ghff; nfhz;lhlg; gl;ljhf Gypfspd; Fuy; thndhyp fle;j Gjd;fpoik (rdtup 2> 2003) xypgug;gpy; mwptpj;jJ Fwpg;gplj;jf;fJ.

nghq;fy; Gj;jhz;L tpoh jkpoPo tpLjiyg; Nghuhl;lj;jpy; jq;fs; ,isa ,dpa capHfis <e;j Nghuhspfs; epidthfTk;> ,e;jpa =yq;fh mur gaq;futhjj;jpw;Fg; gypahd nghJ kf;fs; epidthfTk;> nkhopg; Nghuhl;lj;jpy; gypahfpa czHthsHfs; epidthfTk; mikjp tzf;fj;NjhL njhlq;fpaJ.

tpohtpy; Kjy; epfo;r;rpahf fdlh ehjRu jtpy; fofj;ijr; NrHe;j KUfjh]; FOtpdupd; ehjRu ,ir epfo;r;rp ,lk;ngw;wJ. xU kq;fsfukhd jpUehspy; jkpoHfspd; jdpr; nrhj;jhd ehjRu jtpy; ,ir epfo;r;rp ,lk;ngw;wJ kdJf;F kfpo;r;rpahf ,Ue;jJ. xU kzp Neuk; ehjRu Xir muq;if ePf;fkw epug;gpaJ.

cs;Ns ghy; nghq;fp tope;jNghJ 'nghq;fNyh nghq;fy;' vd;w tho;j;njhyp muq;F vq;fpYk; vjpnuhypj;jJ. ntspapy; kj;jhg;G thzq;fs; tpz;zpy; gwe;jd.

nghq;fiy ftpQH rpth rpd;dj;jk;gp> jpUkjp rpd;dj;jk;gp kw;Wk; mtuJ Foe;ijfs; nghWg;Ngw;Wg; nghq;fpdhHfs;. khf;Nfhyk; mUsurp> mwpturp ,UtuJ iftz;zj;jpy; cUthfpaJ.

rpwg;G tpUe;jpduhf jpU. jpUkjp ehjd; rpwpjud; fye;J nfhz;L Nkd;ikg;gLj;jpdhHfs;.

tpohtpw;F jiyik tfpj;j ef;fPud; jiyikAiuNahL tuNtw;GiuiaAk; epfo;j;jpdhH. cyfk; tho; jkpo; kf;fs; midtUf;Fk; Fwpg;ghf jkpoPoj;jpy; thOk; cld;gpwg;Gf;fSf;Fk;> tpLjiyg; GypfSf;Fk;> me;jg; Gypfis topelj;Jk; jhidj; jiytH NkjF gpughfud; mtHfSf;Fk; mtuJ gilj; jsgjpfSf;Fk; gilg;ghspfs; fofj;jpd; nghq;fy; tho;j;Jf;fisAk; Gj;jhz;L tho;j;Jf;fisAk; njuptpj;Jf; nfhz;lhH.

NkYk; NgRifapy; ',d;W ,e;j Kg;ngUk; tpohit vLg;gjd; %yk; jkpoHfspd; Gj;jhz;L 2034 tpoh. cotHfspd; nghq;fy; tpoh. jpUts;StH Mz;Lj; njhlf;f tpoh vd xU fy;ypy; %d;W khq;fha;fis tPo;j;jpAs;Nshk;.

'cq;fs; Foe;ijfSf;F Jha jkpo;g; ngaH itAq;fs;. cq;fs; tPl;Lj; jpUkzq;fis vq;fs; jha;nkhopahd jkpopy; elj;Jq;fs;. jpUf;Nfhapy; topghl;il ehad;khH fhyj;jpy; nra;jJNghy; nre;jkpopy; nra;Aq;fs;.

'',d;W njhlf;fk; fdlh KUfd; Nfhapy; mwq;fhty; mit jkpopy; Nghw;wp (mHr;rid) topghL nra;tij njhlq;fpAs;sJ vd;w ey;y nra;jpia cq;fSf;Fj; njuptpf;f Mirg;gLfpNwd;. mjw;fhf mwq;fhty; mitapdiug; ghuhl;LtNjhL vq;fs; ed;wpiaj; njuptpj;Jf; nfhs;fpd;Nwd;.

fdlh KUfd; Myaj;jpd; Kd;khjpupiag; gpd;gw;wp wpr;nkd;l; fpy; gps;isahH Nfhapy;> Iag;gd; Nfhapy;> turpj;jp tpdhafH Nfhapy; Nghd;w Vida Nfhapy;fSk; jkpo;g; Nghw;wpia eilKiwf;Ff; nfhz;L tuNtz;Lk; vdf; Nfl;Lf; nfhs;fpNwd;' vd;whH.

nghq;fy; ftpijia c.j.g. foff; ftpQH ,. ,uhruj;jpdk; toq;fpdhH.

czHr;rpf; ftpQH fhrp Mde;jd;> Njdpirr; nry;yg;gh jahupg;gpy; cUthd 'jkpoH gif tpul;Lk;' xypg; Ngio tpohtpd; rpwg;G tpUe;jpdH tof;fwpQH ehjd; rpwpjudhy; ntspapl;L itf;fg;gl;lJ. mjid Nkilapy; te;J jpUthsHfs; eh.rptypq;fk;> rhk; Jiurhkp> v];. jpUr;nry;tk;> ,yq;ifad;> nrhHzypq;fk;> mUl;jpU gpuhd;rp]; NrtpaH mbfshH> Nyhfd; fzgjp ngw;Wf; nfhz;lhHfs;.

Kof;fk; nghWg;ghrpupaH thdjp (md;gurp) 'jkpoH gif tpul;Lk;' xypg; Ngioapy; ,lk;ngw;w xt;nthU ghly;fisAk; jdpj;jdp jpwdha;T nra;J fzPnud;w Fuypy; czHNthLk; nghUNshLk; ciu epfo;j;jpdhH.

fNdba ehlhSkd;;w cWg;gpdHfs; [pk; fup[pahdp]; (Scarborough-Agincourt) kw;Wk; Nahd; fdp]; (Scarborough Centre) ,UtUk; tpohtpy; fye;J nfhz;L ciuahw;wpdhHfs;.

Jha jkpo;g; ngaUf;F FlNthiy %yk; ghtyd;> kyutd; vd;w ,uz;L Foe;ijfSf;Fk; jiyf;F 500 nlhlyH gupR toq;fg;gl;lJ.

tpohtpd; ,Wjp epfo;r;rpahf jkpopirg; ghthzH tHzuhNk];tudpd; jkpopir epfo;r;rp ,lk;ngw;wJ. ghthzH tHzuhNk];tud; ehL Nghw;Wk; ghlfH. ey;y Fuy; tsk; gilj;jtH. mtUf;Fg; Gfo; Njbj; je;jJk; jiytupd; ghuhl;ilg; ngw;wJkhd ghly; '' jhaff; fdTld; rhtpidj; jOtpa re;jdg; NgiofNs! ,q;F $tpLk; vq;fspd; Fuy; nkhop Nfl;Fjh Fopapdpy; tho;gtNu'' vd;w ghlyhFk;. ,e;jg; ghly; khtPuH ehspy; kl;Lk; ghlg;gLtJ Fwpg;gplj;jf;fJ.

mLj;J ey;iyKUfd; xypg;Ngioapy; ,lk;ngw;w ''gd;dpU fz;;zpUe;Jk; ghHf;ftpy;iyNa? ehd; gfy; ,utha;g; ghLfpd;Nwd; Nfl;ftpy;iyNa'' vd;w mofhd ghly;. ''jpirnay;yhk; ,ir nts;sk;'' ,tUf;Fg; Gfo; Njbf; nfhLj;j ,d;ndhU xypg; Ngio. ,e;jg; ghly;fs; midj;ijAk; ,aw;wpatH jkpoPo muritf; ftpQH GJit ,uj;jpdJiu vd;gijr; nrhy;y Ntz;bajpy;iy.

tha;g;ghl;Lf;F nkU$l;batHfs; taypd; V.n[aNjtd;> kpUjq;fk; thRNjtd; ,uhrypq;fk;> flk; r[Pt; tp[aFkhH> KfHrpq; RN[e;jH jHkypq;fk; MfpNahH.

tpohTf;F tUif je;j midtUf;Fk; nghq;fy;> mty;> gok;> til> Tim Hortons Nfhg;gp toq;fg;gl;lJ.

epfo;r;rpia jpU. Qhdk; md;udp njhFj;J toq;fpdhH. c.j.gilg;ghspfs; fof nrayhsH jpUkjp gthdp jHkFyrpq;fk; mtHfsJ ed;wpAiuNahL tpoh ,dpJ epiwNtwpaJ.

,e;j tpohtpw;F MjuT je;j GutyHfs; MH md;l; v]; Xl;Nlh Nry;];> v];.gp. ,k;Nghl;lH];> v];.Nf.up. Aty;NyH]; md;l; nuf;];iuy;];> fhrh nw];Nuhwd;l;> jpaNlhH md;udp> V[pMH epWtdk;> nfhk;GA+lH nuf;> ehjd; rpwpjud; MfpNahHf;F vq;fs; ed;wpiaj; njuptpj;Jf; nfhs;fpNwhk;.

tpohtpid ey;yKiwapy; thdiyfspy; tpsk;gug; gLj;jpaNjhL epfo;r;rpia Neub xypgug;Gr; nra;j fNdba jkpo; thndhyp> tpsk;guj;ij xspgug;gpa jkpo;j; njhiyf; fhl;rp> tpsk;guq;fisAk; tpohr; nra;jpfs; kw;Wk; glq;fisg; Nghl;l 'Kof;fk; " 'ek;ehL' '<oehL' '<oKuR' nra;jp VLfSf;Fk; vq;fs; ed;wpiaj; njuptpj;Jf; nfhs;fpNwhk;.

,jpy; ''Kof;fk;'' nghq;fy; rpwg;gpjio nghq;fy; ed; ehspy; ntspapl;L cjtpajw;Fk; ed;wp nrhy;ypf; nfhs;fpNwhk;. nghq;fy; jkpo;g; Gj;jhz;L 2034 tpohtpd; ntw;wpf;F fle;j VO Mz;L fhykhf nghq;fy; jkpo;g; Gj;jhz;L ,tw;wpd; njhd;ikia> jdpj;jd;ikia> cz;ikia ''Kof;fk;'' VL njhlHr;rpahf typAWj;jp te;jJ Kf;fpa fhuzkhFk;.

ehjRu jtpy; fiyQHfSf;Fk; ,ir epfo;r;rp elj;jpa ghthzH tHzuhNk];tud; FotpdUf;Fk; nghw;fpop toq;fp Nkd;ikg; gLj;jg;gl;lhHfs;.

,Wjpahf tpohehs; gzp ehs; vd;gijg; nghUl;gLj;jhJ fLk; FspupYk; muq;F epuk;gp topa tUif je;J tpohtpidr; rpwg;gpj;j midj;J jkpo; neQ;rq;fSf;Fk; vkJ csk;fdpe;j ed;wpiaj; njuptpj;Jf; nfhs;fpNwhk;.

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Significance of Thamil New Year 2034 and Pongal Festival

By V.Thangavelu

Thanksgiving is an important aspect of Thamil culture and tradition, as is the case with many other civilisations. Most thanksgiving ceremonies are religious in nature, as people of each culture thank their chosen deity for the favours granted to them, though this is not always the case.

The Thamil festival of Thai Pongal is such a thanks-giving ceremony. It is a harvest festival, the equivalent of Canada’s Thanks Giving Day. Thamil farmers celebrate the event to thank gift of nature like the Sun and the farm animals for their assistance in reaping a bountiful harvest.

Thamil New Year 2034 and Pongal festival falls on the first day of the month of Thai of the Thamil calendar (On the 14th of the month of January according to Christian calendar).  Thai (January) is the harvest season in both Thamil Nadu and Thamil Eelam.

Interestingly in Japan too, the harvesting day is celebrated on January 15 of every year and is called  "Kosho Katsu".

In 1969 Kalaignar M. Karunanidhi, Chief Minister of Thamil Nadu, ordered that the day after Pongal should be celebrated as Thiruvalluvar Day all over Thamilnadu. He also declared the day as a government holiday.  The second day of Thai (Thai thingaL) is celebrated as Thiruvalluvar Day since 1974.  Thamilnadu Government also adopted the Thamil Calendar based on the birth of Thiruvalluvar in 1971, in government gazette since 1972   and in all government offices from 1981. 

 

In the solar calendar, January 13/14 has astronomical significance. It is the day the sun after making a complete circle is seen going on its ’ northward journey’ and  observed from the earth the sun enters one of the 12 imaginary zodiac sign of Magara Raasi from Dhanu  Raasi.

 

In ancient times, the solar calendar was not followed in celebrating festivals.    There is historical evidence to show that Thai Pongal was celebrated on the day when the new moon was sighted. This was because in ancient times the calendar was drawn up on the basis of the changing phases of the moon.

The celebration of Thai 1st goes back to the latter part of the Sangam age. According to the Sangam literary work Paripaadal, this day is related to the Thiruvaathirai festival. Having spent the entire month of Maarkazhi praying to god and observing ritual fasting, young virgins celebrated the last day, Thai 1, with the Thai Bathing. According to the work Kaliththokai, the rituals during the month of Maarkazhi are observed in the hope that it will lead to wedlock with a good-hearted husband. It also mentions the worship of Sun as a deity.

According to the stone carvings [kalvettu] at Thiruvotriyoor, Pongal was celebrated during the time of the great king Raajaraaja Chozhan 1. This festival was known as the “Puthiyeedu” festival. Puthiyeedu meant the first harvest of the year.

Both the Maarkazhi month rituals and the Thai 1st bathing rituals are practiced even today. It was these secular  rituals that inspired the immortal hymns of Thiruppaavai and Thiruvempaavai by Saintess Aandaal and Saint Maanikkavaasakar respectively  in the 9th century.

Pongal refers to rice cooked in milk and sweetened with jaggery.  On a full scale it is a three-day festival of nature-worship. On the second day thanks are offered to the cattle, Mattu Pongal or Paddip Pongal, which helped farmers to plough the fields, transport goods and provide milk to drink. On this day the cattle is bathed, decorated and given special gruel.  Turmeric, kunkumam are applied to the horns of the cattle, garlands, small bells and bundles of vadai are hung around their necks and they are paraded in the streets. The cooked Pongal is given to the cattle to eat. In Thamil Nadu, a kind of bullfight called the ‘Jallikattu’ is staged by young men on the 3rd day of Thai Pongal celebrations.

In short, people, houses, and cows all take on an air of freshness and radiance during Thamil New Year and Pongal. There is also the hope that “When Thai is born, a way will be born.”(Thai piRanthaal, vazhi piRakkum). Thai is considered an auspicious month to  hold weddings. 

On Thai Pongal day members of the family wake up early in the morning, take special baths, puts on new clothes and gather in the front of the garden (muttram) to cook the traditional Pongal (rice pudding).

Before Thai Pongal day courtyards are cleaned, old wares  are discarded and replaced with new things, homes colour-washed and decorated.  On the morning of Pongal day the front garden is pre-prepared for the ceremonious cooking.

A flat square pitch is made and decorated with kolam drawings, and it is exposed to the direct sun light. A fire wood hearth will be set up using three bricks. . The cooking begins by putting a clay pot with water on the hearth.

A senior member of the family will conduct the cooking and the rest of the family dutifully assists him or her or watches the event. The moment of climax is the spill over of the Pongal during cooking. The spillover of milk is a propitious symbol of abundance and good omen and  shouts of Pongalo Pongal".  Thereafter, a member of the family ceremoniously puts three handful of new rice inside the boiling pot.

The other ingredients of this special dish are chakkarai (brown cane sugar) or katkandu (sugar candy), milk (cow's milk or coconut milk), roasted green gram (payaru), raisins, cashew nuts and few pods of cardamom.

When the meal is ready it is first put on a banana leaf and the family pray for a few minutes to thank nature, sun and farmers.

Then the meal (Pongal) is served with fruits (banana and mango) among the family. Later it will be shared with neighbours, friends and relatives.

The richness of Thamil culture and historical traditions is symbolized in the Thamil New Year and Thai Pongal festival.    It is a joyous and happy occasion when the poor, the rich, the farmer, the villager all celebrate the harvest festival together irrespective of their individual faith.

By celebrating this festival the Thamils in Diaspora help to perpetuate our rich culture, traditions, literary opulence, sublime philosophy and socio-economic aspirations.  Also to give an emotional link to our kith and kin at home who for the first time in two decades  are celebrating Pongal in an atmosphere of relative peace.

On this Pongal festive day, we should banish superstitious beliefs, darkness of ignorance and egoistic arrogance. Instead lit the light of knowledge and the warmth of human love and compassion among all people.