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5 Million Take Holy Dip In Ganga On Mahashivaratri

on 2010/2/14 8:02:01 ( 1168 reads )


HARIDWAR, INDIA, February 13, 2010: Over 5 million devotees, along with sages and ash-smeared Naga sadhus, took a holy dip in the Ganga here on Friday on the first 'shahi snan' (royal bath) of the Maha Kumbh on Mahashivaratri. The day was marked by a grand procession of the 'akharas' or religious orders.

The procession, which witnessed thousands of Naga sadhus displaying their acrobatic and martial skills, added color to the Kumbh Mela which started on January 14.

Elsewhere across the country, the faithful thronged temples to offer prayers and observed dawn-to-dusk fasts as Mahashivaratri was celebrated. Devotees waited in long, serpentine queues to offer milk and 'Gangajal' to the Shivlingams at the temples.

They turned up in droves at the famous Somnath temple in Gujarat's Junagadh district and in Delhi, Shiva temples were beautifully decorated. The festival was also observed in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh, and across the country with traditional fervor.

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