KAUAI, HAWAII, January 14, 2011: Makara Sankranti is four days of giving thanks to four great forces of influence and protection: Indra, the giver of rain; Surya, the Sun; gracious cattle and beloved ancestors. This happy occasion is known as Pongal by Tamils, Pedha Panduga among the Telugus and Lohri by Punjabis. It begins on the day the Sun enters Makara (Capricorn), between January 13 and 15. This is a special time of giving blankets, pumpkins, sug- arcane and other items to the poor. Married women are honored, and gifts are given to newborn children.
An excellent slideshow on Makar Sankranit is available here.