Thousands of Sadhus gather to take part in the procession of holy dip in the waters of the river Ganges during the early morning on the first bathing day of Ardh Kumbh Mela at Allahabad in 2007.
Kumbh Mela is a mass Hindu pilgrimage of faith in which Hindus gather to bathe in a sacred river. It is considered to be largest peaceful gathering in the world. It is held every third year at one of the four places by rotation: Haridwar, Allahabad (Prayaga), Nashik and Ujjain. Thus the Kumbh Mela is held at each of these four places every twelfth year. Ardha Kumbh Mela is held at only two places, Haridwar and Allahabad, every sixth year.
Ardh Kumbh Mela is celebrated once in every six years after the hosting of Maha Kumbh Mela festival, the celebration of which takes place after every twelve years. The venue keeps on changing from time to time. There are primarily four locations for conducting the Ardha Kumbh Mela, namely Prayag near Allahabad, Ujjain, Nasik and Haridwar. Ardh Kumbh Mela has been drawing more and more crowds year after year. Pilgrims visit this religious mela for the cleansing of their soul.
During the festive period of Ardh Kumbha Mela, a tent city turns up to provide refuge to the thousands of worshippers. Plenty of religious Hindu organizations set up their camps. Different theatre groups come in the forefront and enact plays that depict scenes from the religious scriptures of Hindus. The story of war between the demons and deities for obtaining the nectar is acted out, which brings out the significance of conducting Kumbh Mela. The festival of Kumbha Mela is truly a spectacle of faith.
Triveni Sangam is the 'confluence' of three rivers. Sangama is the Sanskrit word for confluence. The point of confluence is a sacred place for Hindus. A bath here is said to wash away all of one's sins and free one from the cycle of rebirth. Triveni Sangam, in Prayag (Allahabad) has two physical rivers Ganges, Yamuna, and the invisible or mythic Saraswati River. The site is in Prayag, India.
Allahabad built on a very ancient site of the Aryans formerly known as Prayag, is located at the junction of the holy rivers Ganga and the Yamuna. The city acquired its present name in 1 largest religious gathering in the world, is held every 12 years at the confluence of the holy rivers attracting millions of Hindu devotees. This historically famous city was a centre of the Indian Independence movement and the home of the Nehru family. Today Allahabad is a rapidly growing commercial and administrative city in Uttar Pradesh.
Source: Wikipedia and http://www.thecolorsofindia.com/kumbh-mela/ardh-kumbh-mela.html
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