Hundreds of thousands of devotees on Friday took a holy dip in the Bay of Bengal at various places in Tamil Nadu, including Rameswaram, on the auspicious occasion of ‘Thai Amavasai’ (new moon day in the Tamil month ‘Thai’).
There was a long queue for taking bath in the 26 holy water sites in and outside the famous Sri Ramanathaswamy temple here, officials said.
Thousands of pilgrims gathered at Tiruppullani sea coast in Ramanathapuram district to pray for the souls of forefathers.
Ramanathapuram district authorities had made arrangements in view of a large number of devotees visiting the temple town and security was stepped up.
People thronged Kodiakarai, Vedaranyam and Poompuhar in Nagapattinam district to take a holy dip in the Bay of Bengal.
Legend has it that Saint Agathiyar got a darshan of Lord Shiva at Vedaranyeshwarar temple in Vedaranyam on ‘Thai Amavasai’ day after he took a holy dip in the Bay of Bengal.
People took a dip at Kaveripoompattinam, near Poompuhar, where the Cauvery meets the Bay of Bengal, as it is believed that it would free one from all sins committed.
At Ananthamangalam, near Porayar, thousands of devotees thronged Lord Hanuman temple to pray for the souls of their forefathers.
Meanwhile, people, including women and children, congregated along the banks of the Cauvery, especially the famous “Amma Mandapam” bathing ghats in Srirangam, took holy dip and performed shradh ceremonies.
Similarly, huge gatherings of people were reported in places like ‘Triveni Sangamam’ (confluence of the Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean) in Kanniyakumari, besides banks of various rivers, sea shores, waterfalls and water bodies across the state.
Cooked rice, banana, black sesame seeds were offered to the forefathers during the tharpanam ritual.