Place: West Bengals, India
Date: 15 January
Eminent For: Fair, Taking Holy dip in the river Ganges
Ganga Sagar Snan the name itself implies an idea that this name has got the connection with the most holy river in India- Ganges. Also called as Gangasagar Mela, it is mainly a festival of Hindus rejoiced in the culturally rice state of the West Bengal. This festival is observed on the auspicious day of Makar Sankranti that falls on January 14 every year.
On this day, people of not just West Bengal but also from each nook and corner of India come to take a holy plunge in the holy water of Ganges. It is said that taking a bath in Ganga on this very day wards off all the sins of one’s life. The celebration has attained so much popularity that every year a fair is held to entertain the gathered devotees and visitors who come to take a holy bath.
Tale behind Ganga Sagar Snan:
The Ganga Sagar Snan is held on the islet of Sagar means the ocean. This islet is in the Bay of Bengal where the river Ganga merges with the sea & then takes a route towards the Indian Ocean. Based on the customary mythology on this particular day Mother Ganga dipped in the merging waters of Sea and the river to wash the skeleton of the sixty thousand sons of the King Sagara who dies as a consequence of a curse casted upon them by the then great saint Kapila.
Observing the Celebration of Ganga Sagar Snan:
Generally people belonging to the Hindu community assemble from each part of India for over a week earlier this auspicious day. On the auspicious day of Makar Sankranti, ar around 3 AM, the legendary saint Kapila’s puja is performed. The devotees are needed to observe fast, attend the worshipping ritual followed by the Maha Puja & Yagna to offer gratitude to Ma Ganga & then take a dip in the holy water to wash away their sins.