Chill, fog keep Kumbh devotees at bay on Basant Panchami
Haridwar: Bone-chilling cold wave coupled
with heavy fog on Wednesday played a dampener at the Maha Kumbh here
with only a few thousand devotees taking the holy bath on the
occasion of Basant Panchami, the third auspicious day in the
three-month-long holy congregation.
The main bathing ghat of 'Har Ki Pauri' wore an almost
deserted look during the morning hours and witnessed activity
only after noon when the sun's rays cut through the fog
Even the kite enthusiasts who confined themselves to
their houses initially came out only after the chilly wind
subsided. The scene after that was of a blue clear sky alive
with multi-coloured kites -- huge and small.
The 'ghats' were almost empty early morning with
security personnel seen more in number than the devotees.
Basant Panchmi marks the beginning of spring and is
also a day dedicated to Saraswati, the goddess of learning.
The day is celebrated by taking a dip in rivers and flying
The Kumbh mela administration, which had expected a
much bigger turnout especially those from states having
agriculture as their mainstay, and nearby areas, attributed
the turnout to the cold snap.