Another popular festival traditionally celebrated by Nepalis is Maghe Sankranti, it is called by different names, such as Makar Sankranti, Maghi, Maghe Sankranti, etc., which falls on the first day of the month of Magh. That day is a public holiday in Nepal. On the day of Maghe Sankranti, it is customary to go to various rivers, seas and Triveni in Nepal to bathe and worship.
Since the Sun enters Capricorn from Sagittarius and descends from the day of Maghe Sankranti, it is said that it is called “Capricorn Sankranti”. Since the sun enters the northern hemisphere from the southern hemisphere, it is believed that the day will get longer and the night will get shorter. It is mentioned in Bhavishya Purana, Vishnubachan and Dharma Sindhu that after bathing on the day of Maghe Sakranti, one can get special benefits by bathing in ghee, knife, sesame laddu, vegetables, yam, cloth, water and Makal.
This festival is celebrated by everyone in Nepal where there is a majority of different castes and communities. In the Terai districts, Maithili celebrates Tila Sankranti. In the Terai, on this day, khichdi, sesame and Chiura laddu are prepared and eaten. Maghi is considered to be the biggest festival filled with the original culture of the Tharus. The Magar people celebrate this festival with special pomp for three days. On the first day, it is customary to bathe and worship the ancestors and Kulayan and to worship the sisters with “Nisho”. Read more
On the second day, Magh Khan goes away as a picnic, and on the last day, it is customary for men from all over the village to shoot taro together. Nowadays, the practice of celebrating Maghe Sakranti is increasing everywhere in the country and abroad. Maghe Sakranti is celebrated with various dishes like sesame laddu, knife, tarul and celeriac. The use of food items to help keep the body warm during this winter festival also seems to be beneficial in terms of health.
It is believed that by purifying the body during this winter solstice, eating ghee knife and sesame and khichdi will increase the amount of heat in the body and give energy to the body and rubbing freshly cooked oil on the body will get rid of cold and destroy skin related diseases and other ailments.