Do you want to remove all your recent searches?

All recent searches will be deleted

Watch Later
Add to

Temple idols made of silver leave Gangotri for the winter

5 years ago18 views

Murtis of Gangotri temple leave for their winter home! The temple is behind and as they turn this wall, that's the last of the presence of the idols at Gangotri temple for that year! They'll be back with much fanfare when the kapath opens next spring...

Swaying from one side to the other, the idols sit on a palki or palanquin, blessing devotees along the way as they make their long way down to Mukhba in the valley above Harsil.

The temple idols of Gangotri mandir make their way down for the winter months, in this important ceremony that is held at the temple, but one that is sparsely attended due to the cold season when few people live up in the high mountains! Watch this rare ceremony unfold before you. Never before seen on television or on the internet, this is rare footage!

At the beginning of winter, the idol at Gangotri temple is moved down, in a procession, to a lower village temple, near Mukhba. The mountains are barely frequented at this time of year, as everyone has moved down to lower heights due to the impending winter. A rare sight on an important occasion when the idol is being packed and prepared for the big move!

Gangotri temple in early winter, as the statue is moved down to a lower station. See rare customs and traditions of the Garhwali people, including women going into trances and the idol on a chariot being lowered onto the faithful, to bless them.

The Gangotri temple was built by the Gorkha General Amar Singh Thapa, in the 18th century, is situated on the left bank of Bhagirathi. The temple is nested amidst the beautiful surroundings of deodars and pines.

It lies close to the the holy rock or the "Bhagirath Shila" where King Bhagirath had worshiped Lord Shiva. The Gangotri temple is dedicated to Goddess Ganga and located on the banks of River Bhagirathi.

The Pujaris and brahmins belongs to the village of Mukhwa. The water from Gangotri is carried to offer to Lord Shiva. It is believed that this water has nectar in it and will soothe the throat of Shiva who gulp the poison.

The picturesque pilgrimage in the hinterlands of the Himalayas is the most sacred spot where Ganga, the stream of life, touched earth for the first time. According to Hindu mythology, Goddess Ganga took the form of a river to absolve the sins of King Bhagiratha's predecessors, following his severe penance of several centuries. Lord Shiva received into his matted locks to minimize the immense impact of her fall. She came to be called Bhagirathi at her legendary source.

King Sagar, after slaying the demons on earth decided to stage an Ashwamedha Yajna as a proclamation of his supremacy. The horse which was to be taken on an uninterrupted journey around the earth was to be accompanied by the King's 60,000 sons born to Queen Sumati and one son Asamanja born of the second queen Kesani. Indra, supreme ruler of the gods feared that he might be deprived of his celestial throne if the 'Yagya' succeeded and then took away the horse and tied it to the ashram of Kapil Muni, who was then in deep meditation.

The sons of the King Sagar searched for the horse and finally found it tied near the meditating Kapil. Sixty thousand angry sons of King Sagara stormed the ashram of sage Kapil. When he opened his eyes, the 60,000 sons had all perished, by the curse of sage Kapil. Bhagiratha, the grandson of King Sagar, is believed to have meditated to please the Goddess Ganga enough to cleanse the ashes of his ancestors, and liberate their souls, granting them salvation or Moksha.

This footage is part of the professionally-shot broadcast stock footage archive of Wilderness Films India Ltd., the largest collection of HD imagery from South Asia. The Wilderness Films India collection comprises of tens of thousands of hours of high quality broadcast imagery, mostly shot on HDCAM 1080i High Definition, HDV and XDCAM. Write to us for licensing this footage on a broadcast format, for use in your production! We are happy to be commissioned to film for you or else provide you with broadcast crewing and production solutions across South Asia. We pride ourselves in bringing the best of India and South Asia to the world... Reach us at wfi @ and

Report this video

Select an issue

Embed the video

Temple idols made of silver leave Gangotri for the winter
<iframe frameborder="0" width="480" height="270" src="//" allowfullscreen allow="autoplay"></iframe>
Add the video to your site with the embed code above