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Devotees throng Kshipra on last day of Kumbh

A sea of humanity, some drawn from abroad, braving the sultry weather on Saturday flooded the banks of Kshipra river for the ongoing third and last ‘shahi snan’ (royal bath) of the Simhastha-Kumbh Mela, marking the end of the month-long festival.

Devotees throng Kshipra on last day of Kumbh
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Devotees take a dip in Kshipra river during the third Shahi Snan (Royal bath)

Ujjain

The ‘snan’ began in the wee hours with Naga and other sadhus of various akharas venturing into the holy Kshipra chanting ‘Har Har Mahadev’. 

The snan ended on Saturday night. The third royal bath has become all the more important as it coincides with BuddhPurnima (full moon day), said priest Ishwar Sharma. 

“Lakhs of people have converged from several parts of the country to take the holy dip,” Madhya Pradesh Transport Minister and in charge of Simhastha Mela Bhupendra Singh told PTI at Ramghat. 

The minister claimed that a total of 7.5 crore people have taken part in the mela (till noon) which turned out to be a ‘Mahakumbh’. 

All roads in Ujjain were packed with devotees jostling to reach the banks of Kshipra to take the holy dip. 

The minister termed the Simhastha, which is being organised here after a gap of 12 years, as a grand success. 

Ram Ghat has been decked up for the holy dip where the Naga sadhus of Juna, Agni, Aahvan and Vaishnav akharas along with their Heads took a dip carrying their flags, deities and traditional symbols since 3 am. 

After the akhara snan got over, scores rushed towards various ghats especially Ram Ghat to take the holy dip. The minister also informed that there was no pollution in the river and maintained that hygiene conditions prevailed at the ghats and also in Ujjain city. He said during the monthlong mela, nearly 10,000 foreigners visited Ujjain. 

A devotee from Ireland, Brendan Lawlor, said, “I have enjoyed my stay in Ujjain and the arrangements in the holy city were very good.” 

A French national, Sonia Koszul, also praised the arrangements at the Simhastha mela. “I got interested in attending this religious fair after coming to know about it through the internet,” she said. 

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