Singapore Police Force (SPF) will close Little India’s Hasting Road from 10.00am on Tuesday (3 January) to 5.00pm on Tuesday (17 January) in light of Pongal Heritage Carnival 2017.
SPF said that during the road closure, access will only be granted to police and emergency vehicles. Parking restrictions along the peripheral roads will be strictly enforced. Therefore, vehicles found parking and causing obstruction will be towed.
Members of public may contact the organiser at the hotline: 6392 2246 for further enquiries.
According to Pongalfestival.org, Pongal is festival for harvest – the Tamil equivalent of Thanksgiving. In an agriculture based civilization, the harvest plays an important part. As the farmer cultivating his land depends on cattle, timely rain and the Sun therefore, once a year, he expresses his gratitude to these during the harvest festival.
With the end of the wet month of Margazhi (mid December to mid January) the new Tamil month of Thai heralds a series of festivals. The first day of this month is a festival day known as “Pongal Day”. Pongal means the “boiling over” of milk and rice during the month of Thai.
According to the calendar based on the solar system the year is divided into two halves following the apparent movement of the Sun northwards and Southwards. The farmer is termed Uttarayanam and the latter is Dakshinayanam. On the first day of the Thai, the Sun leaves the zodiac sign of Sagittarius and enters that of capricorn, the latter is known as Makaram. The event thus is celebrated as Pongal.
The four day celebration of Pongal Marks a period of plenty, peace and happiness. There is a Tamil saying that “Thai peranthal Vali Perakum”. That paraphrased means with the dawn of the month of Thai, there will be peace, happiness, prosperity, brightness and harmony in the life of everyone. It is held to honor the Sun, for a bountiful harvest. Families gather to rejoice and share their joy and their harvests with others. The Sun is offered a “Pongal” of rice and milk.