13 Jan : India is a country of festival. Every festival has its own importance. One of the major festivals of India is URTARAY or MAKAR SANKRANTI. India is observing every year 14th of january as kite flying day and is known as uttarayan.Uttrayan is the name given to this day because it is this day from where the sun starts moving towards the uttar or north and so"it means sun moving towards the north".
The special significance attached to the celebration of Makar sankranti, is Kite Flying. The gods who are believed to have slumbered for six long months are now awake and the portals of heaven are thrown open. The serene blue sky with colorful kites look splendid and since morning to evening remains dotted with vivid splashes of color with kites in a variety of hues, shapes and sizes. Kite-flying festival is being held in important cities of Gujarat each year. The temples are thronged with visitors and alms are distributed freely.
The festival draws expert kite-makers and flyers not only from cities of India but also from around the world. Designer’s Kites of infinite variety are displayed at the venue. The festival is a time of thanksgiving for the religious, since it marks the awakening of the gods from their long slumber. The gods who are believed to have slumbered for six long months are now awake and the portals of heaven are thrown open. It is also a signal for merry-making.
The excitement continues with the onset of night. As the sunsets and darkness hovers over, youngsters continue competing each other in supremacy in the sky, now with the paper lanterns tied to their kite-strings. These lanterns known as tukkal swaying at the mild stroke of wind presents a lovely image while some try to cut off these tukkals and enjoy the fun.
Gujarat Tourism also hosts the International Kite Festival drawing crowds to witness the show of eminent kitists from many states and countries. This International Kite Festival is always held at Ahmedabad on January 14, to coincide with the festival of Uttarayan or Makar Sankranti. People from all over the world display their exotic kites of various designs. It is a splendid spectacular show to see the sky with colorful kites, huge size and varied designs and shapes This gives the people of Ahmedabad the change to see the unusual kites brought by the visitors some of which are truly works of art. The participants and spectators also enjoy cuisine and Crafts display.
In the district of KUTCH –there is a small village MADHAPAR, a group of youngsters from Madhapar village every year make a huge kites with special social awareness messages since 1997. This time they have selected theme of INTEGRITY and BROTHERHOOD. They have made a huge kite of 18*18 and drew Indian map on it. They have also covered themes like SAVE NATURE, POLIO, NO TERRORISM, EYE AND BLOOD DONATION, and SAVE GIRL CHILD ETC. in previous years.
The group does it to spread awareness on large scale. They say their happiness gets doubled when they fly huge social awareness messages. They also want to help needy people with this kind of attempt. The group consists of youngsters from various casts, community.