Celebrating Pongal in eco-friendly manner

CHENNAI: In a bid to promote eco-friendly celebrations, residents in city are keen on sustainable practices for Pongal festival.

According to Vatsala Parthasarathy of Journalist Colony, “The festival by itself is quite environment-friendly. I hope people do not burn many items on Bhogi. And those who are into gifts, it is better to keep it simple. For instance, a personalised hand-painted earthen pot with a kolam designed on it”.

Many others, on the other hand, have their own styles.  M Vijaya of Palavakkam says, she prefers Pongal, the traditional way. “We wake up early and get the dishes ready before the first rays of sun to offer it to God”.

Similarly, Prema Vaduganathan, a resident of Adyar, calls the festival a “family affair”. “We started cleaning the house two weeks in prior”, she says.  On Thai Pongal, Prema says, a huge kolam will adorn the entrance of her house and that she would decorate the place with mango leaves and flowers. “We keep two huge brass vessels with turmeric and ‘kungumam’ dots, tied with turmeric and ginger root plants around the neck of the brass vessels. In one vessel, we cook sweet pongal and in the other, ven pongal. I also prepare broad beans, pumpkin and sweet potato gravy to offer to the deity”, she adds.