Ganga Dussehra

Religion: Hindu
Country: India
Upcoming Ganga Dussehra is on 01 June 2020 (Monday)

Days Remaining in Ganga Dussehra 2020
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Ganga Dussehra dedicated to Goddess Ganga falls on Dashami Tithi or the tenth day of the bright half of the moon in month of Jyaistha. This is the day on which the sacred river Ganga descended on earth from heaven. So this festival is also known as Gangavataran which means the descent of the Ganga. This festival is celebrated for ten days beginning on the Amavasya and ends on the shukla dasami. This corresponds to month of May or June according to the Gregorian calendar. Ganga who is regarded as a celestial river descending from heaven is the most sacred river in India and a holy dip in Ganga can purge all type of sins. This festival is celebrated with great fervour in the states of Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal.

Ganga Dussehra Legend

Legend has it that once there lived a king named Sagara. He had two wives out of which one gave birth to one son whereas other wife gave birth to 60,000 sons. He performed Ashva Medha Yagna and the sacrificial horse was stolen away by Indra for fear of being dethroned and left within the premises of Rishi Kapila’s Ashram. All sixty thousand sons went set out in search of the horse. They mistook the sage to have stolen the horse and this angered the sage who cursed them and burnt them to ashes. Then the great-grandson of Sagara Bhagirathi wanted to perform the necessary obsequies and last rites to his ancestors.

Bhagirath undertook severe austerities and prayed for the Ganga to descend onto the parched earth for the sake of salvation of his ancestors. But she asked for someone to check her flow which otherwise would turn out to be destructive. Bhagirath did penance again to please lord Shiva who agreed to control the flow of Ganga. Thus on the tenth day of the bright half of Jyeshth month Ganga began to flow from heaven to the matted hair of Shiva and from the hair of Shiva she began to flow on this earth. Since Ganga was brought to earth due to severe penances of the sage Bhagiratha and that is why she is also called Bhagirathi.

How is Ganga Dussehra Celebrated

Ganga Dussehra is a festival of faith and devotion. As per the scriptures sacred bath in the river and donations have great significance on this day. The first ten days of the month Jyeshth are dedicated to honour the river Ganges. It is believed that if one offers prayers on this day, one attains salvation from ten sins. This is an important bathing day. On this people visit Allahabad, Garhmukteshwar, Haridwar, Rishikesh or Varanasi to take a holy dip. If the devotes cannot make it to the banks of the Ganga many will use water from the Ganga that is kept at home to bathe. In the evening thousands of leaf boats loaded with flames, flowers, and sweets are offered to the river and the devotees take part in the Ganga Aarti at Dasaswamedh Ghat Huge fairs are organised in different parts of the country. Mela of Himachal and fair named Patang Utsav of Mathura are the major centre of attraction along with a big mela in Haridwar which is held from this day until the full moon.


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