Pongal is an important harvest festival of Tamil Nadu and Kaanum Pongal is celebrated as the last and fourth day of the Pongal festivities. The celebrations of Pongal come to an end with Kaanum Pongal. Kaanum Pongal is an ancient festival for the
Tamils and it is celebrated on the third day of month of ‘Thai’ in the Tamil calendar. Kaanum Pongal is also acknowledged as ‘Thiruvalluvar Day’ in remembrance of the great Tamil philosopher and poet named ‘Thiruvalluvar’. Kaanum Pongal is the day
of relaxation and enjoyment and people spend time by socializing or visiting each other’s house. In Andhra Pradesh Kaanum Pongal is celebrated as ‘Mukkanuma’ and is observed by worshipping cattle.
On the day of Kaanum Pongal, devotees clean their homes and decorate it with ‘kolam’. On this day, Kolam of Sun God is drawn as the prime deity in the month of Thai is Sun God. Special puja is done and Sarkarai Pongal is made as offering to Sun
The most important event observed on Kaanum Pongal is visiting the banks of River Kaveri. It is celebrated with friends and families just like ‘Bhai Dhuj’ and ‘Raksha Bandhan’. A scrumptious meal is prepared on this day. People pack lunches and
then enjoy it with their families on the bank of Kaveri River. In some places, special prayers and pujas are offered to Mother Kaveri.
‘Kumi patu’ or ‘Kummippatu’ is another ritual observed on Kaanum Pongal. This ritual is very predominant in the rural areas of Tamil Nadu and is done for speedy marriage of young girls whose marriages are delayed for some reasons. During Kumi
Patu, the girl is made to sit in the middle of the circle and women dance around her to the tunes of Kumi patu.
The festival of Kaanum is the Tamil way of celebrating Brother’s Day. On this day women feed the birds with rice and pray for the prosperity of their brothers. This ritual is known as ‘Kanu’. Sisters also visit the home of their brothers to
inquire about their well-being. Women also eat food made on the previous day for long life and well being of their brothers.
Kaanum Pongal is the day of merriment. People visit each other’s home and mingle freely even with strangers. New relationships are initiated and on Kaanum Pongal people believe it auspicious to make marriage proposals.
On the day of Kaanum Pongal, brothers give gifts to their married sisters in exchange of love. Landlords also give gits in the form of money, clothes and food to their tenants. The younger’s in the family pay their respect to elders and get a
token of money as blessings in return.
In the state of Andhra Pradesh, this day is celebrated by worshipping cattles. This day is the favourite day for non-vegetarians as people abstain from eating non-vegetarian food on the first three days of Pongal and save it for the last
Kaanum Pongal marks the end of the Pongal celebrations. The word ‘kaanum’ in Tamil means ‘to visit’ and so on the day of Kaanum Pongal families hold reunions. There is also a tradition of presenting gifts to one another as a token of love. Since
Kaanum Pongal is the day of socializing, parks, zoos, theatres, beaches, wildlife sanctuaries and other tourist destinations remain extremely crowded on this day. In Tamil Nadu, Kaanum Pongal is also referred as ‘Virgin Pongal’ as it is
enthusiastically celebrated by unmarried girls.