Thai Pongal Day Message
Thai Pongal is the first festival for the year 2023, which Tamil people all over the world, including Sri Lankans, celebrate together with great enthusiasm. Therefore, first of all, I wish to bring greetings for the upcoming Thai Pongal day festival which will be fruitful, happy, and spiritual healing.
The main purpose of this Thai Pongal festival is to show gratitude to the sun in its contribution improve the harvest, the contribution of the rain to make it more fertile, and to show gratitude to the cattle and animals serving towards a better harvest.
Our Tamil community, who are always connected with God and nature, will definitely celebrate this festival full of heart, despite the hardships they have to experience in their lives, such as economic hardship, illnesses, poverty, etc. They offer the new harvest harvested from their fields to the sun, the god they believe and to the other gods, considering it as an honorable responsibility associated with their lives.
According to the traditional calendar month of the Tamil people, January is called “Thaimasaya”. It is a festival with many colorful cultural elements. The yard of the house shaped by the beautiful “kolam” pattern of Tamil women who made cleanliness of their home a priority, is an extremely beautiful and sign that should not be forgotten in this Pongal festival.
There are several important messages that the Thai Pongal festival brings to all of us as Sri Lankans. As per my vision, I believe one of the most important customs is to let go of the mistakes we made in the previous year, and look forward to the new year with fresh expectations.
It is also the last ritual celebrated by our Hindu friends in the “Bhogi Pongal” Year before the Thai Pongal Festival. May the wonderful” Thai Pongal” festival that comes to the world in the year 2023 be a beginning of a new tomorrow, free from the dangers of oppression with support, equality, prosperity, and kind-hearted people who distribute Pongal milk rice to the whole country regardless of caste!
Mahinda Yapa Abewardene
Parliament of Sri Lanka