An important festival celebrating the descent of the river Ganga, which is the holiest rivers in the country. It is often referred to as Maa Ganga. Ganga Dusshera also is known as Gangavataran is the festival that marks the descent of Ganges into the earth.
It is celebrated each and falls on Dashami Tithi or the tenth day of the bright half of the moon in the Hindu calendar month of jyaistha. Ganga Dussehra 2019 is celebrated on June 12 this year. People worship Goddess Ganga and it is said that taking a dip in the holy river water will purify a person’s soul from all their past sins.
Ahead of the festival this year, let’s know the history and significance of the day
The festival begins 9 days in advance and Ganga Dusshera is the last day of the celebration. It is widely celebrated in the states of Northern India. People hold a Puja near the bank of the river and offer their respects to the holy water.
History and Significance of Ganga Dusshera
As per the legends, Rishi Bhagirath performed a deep meditation for years to convince Ganga to come on earth. It is said that Ganga earlier flowed in heaven from where she brought down to the earth in a form of Goddess. The day she came back on the earth marks Gangavataran or Ganga Dusshera.
According to the legends, King Sagara and his 60,000 sons were killed because of a curse form sage Kapila. The great-grandson of Sagara, Bhagiratha wanted to conduct a ceremony for his ancestors but there was no water. He appealed to Lord Brahma and Lord Shiva helped river Ganga make her presence on earth.
Lord Shiva helped the river to reach the earth by letting her fall on his head and thus reach the ground. When the holy water if Ganga touched the remains of the ancestors the region was flourished. That is the reason the arrival of Ganga on the earth is considered auspicious.
Celebration of Ganga Dusshera
The festival is celebrated with much fervor and enthusiasm in the state of Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, and West Bengal. As taking a dip in the water of Ganga is believed to be auspicious and it said to get rid of 10 of his sins. So people gather and perform a Puja around the Ganga Ghat and then take a dip.
Hundreds of priests gather along the Ghat to perform the Ganga aarti.