Kanuma Panduga 2024

16 January 2024
Andhra Pradesh    Regional holiday

Kanuma Oanduga or simply Kanuma is a significant day during the Pongal and Sankranti festivals, which are both ancient harvest festivals that take place in mid-January. It celebrates the movement of the sun reversing, marking the start of the end of winter and start of the harvesting of the rice crops.

In Andhra Pradesh, the Kanuma festival is celebrated on the third day or the four-day Sankranti or harvest festival. It may also be called Mattu Pongal meaning the festival of a cow. It is a significant festival of Telugu people and celebrates the contribution of cattle and animals that are an important part of the rural economy in Andhra Pradesh and South India. Govardhan puja or the worship of cows take place during the Kanuma Panduga festival. The cattle are cleaned and bathed and adorned with flowers and ornaments. They are taken to the temples and traditional rituals are performed.

Sankranti ends on the next day with Maukkanuma, a day of feasting and celebration.

According to legend, on this day Lord Krishna saved the local people of Gokula who came to his rescue after there was a huge flood in the village. It is said that Lord Indra, in the form of his avatar god of rain, was overconfident about his powers and flooded the village. Krishna picked up the Govardhan hill with his little finger and gave shelter to all the villagers in danger. Seeing the effect of his actions, Indra withdrew the heavy rains from Gokula. Krishna then offered a Govardhan puja to calm Indra. This day is celebrated as Kanuma Panduga in Andhra Pradesh and even Tamil Nadu.