In a warm and inclusive message, Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe has extended his sincere wishes to the Hindu and Tamil community worldwide on the auspicious occasion of Thai Pongal. Celebrated by Hindus with immense zeal and enthusiasm, Thai Pongal marks the commencement of the harvest season and symbolizes the spirit of gratitude.

President Wickremesinghe emphasized the historical and cultural significance of Thai Pongal, tracing its roots back to the Chola dynasty a millennium ago. He highlighted the festival’s purpose, which goes beyond the celebration of the bountiful harvest, aiming to express gratitude to those who have played a crucial role in agriculture.

Underlining the festival’s broader essence, the President spoke of Thai Pongal as a time for new beginnings and optimism. He encouraged the community to embrace the spirit of the occasion by leaving behind the past and welcoming new opportunities with enthusiasm. The President linked the festival to Sri Lanka’s economic rejuvenation, particularly through the government’s agricultural modernization program, symbolizing hope and prosperity for the nation.

President’s Full Thai Pongal Day Message

Thai Pongal, a vibrant Hindu harvest festival celebrated by the Tamil Community worldwide, beckons us into a realm of joy and gratitude, signifying not only the bountiful harvest but also the promise of new beginnings. Embraced within the auspicious month of Thai (January) in the Tamil calendar, this celebration harmonizes with the Sun’s northward journey, marking the onset of the harvest season.

Originating around a thousand years ago during the Chola dynasty, this festival commemorates the first harvest of the year. Its purpose is to express gratitude to those who contributed to the harvest.

Beyond its agricultural essence, Thai Pongal heralds a fresh start, a time to relinquish the past and welcome new opportunities with unwavering optimism. Rooted in the belief of the pivotal role of agriculture in rejuvenating Sri Lanka’s economy through the government’s agricultural modernization program, the dawn of Thai symbolizes the inception of a promising journey filled with hope and prosperity.

Thai Pongal also serves as a reminder of the value of equality. I urge everyone to come together with determination, akin to the unity of siblings, to realize new hopes for the country’s future.

I wish the Tamil community worldwide a prosperous and joyous Thai Pongal celebration.

Ranil Wickremesinghe,
Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka.