Annual monsoon festival at Gaya's Mahabodhi Temple attracts Hindu pilgrims

Published: Friday, August 13, 2010, 18:21 [IST]
 

Gaya (Bihar), Aug 13 (ANI): An annual monsoon festival at the Mahabodhi temple in Gaya, Bihar, is attracting hundreds of Hindu pilgrims.

"Pilgrims come to pay obeisance and respect God. They also visit the Sarovar and Bodhi Bridge here," said Bhante Dhammisara, a monk at the Mahabodhi temple.

Acknowledged as a world heritage monument in 2002, the Bodh Gaya Temple has since drawn a large number of foreign tourists.

Lord Buddha is known to have attained Nirvana (salvation) under the Bodhi Tree where the temple now stands.

"I came to Gaya to pay obeisance to Lord Buddha at the Bodhi temple," said Ratnesh, a Kanwaria pilgrim.

Kanwaria pilgrims undergo a rite in which they fetch water from the Ganga River on foot for offering to Shiva during the monsoon season.

This annual ritual takes place during the auspicious month of Shravan.

All Kanwarias take a holy bath in the River Ganga at Sultanganj and then fetch the water, which they carry on foot to Baba Dham, 103 kilometres away in neighbouring Jharkhand. By Suryapratap (ANI)


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