Shome Adhikary & Friend

Shome Adhikary & Friend

There is a proverb in Bengali – “Sab Tirtha bar bar Gangasagar Ek Bar”- which means taking a holy dip only once in your life – during Makar Sankranti is enough to earn that much virtue which one can earn by visiting all the pilgrim centres throughout his/her life.

Makar Sankranti is one of the most auspicious days of the year. It is celebrated in the last day of Bengali Month – POUS.

Makar Sankranti falls on the day when sun makes a transition to Capricorn from Saggitarius. Located between 21 deg. 36 min to 21 deg. 56 min north latitude to 88 deg. 2 min to 88 deg. 11 min east latitude, Gangasagar is the largest village of Sagar Island which is again located in the extreme of Sundarban of the south 24 parganas in the Diamond Harbour sub- division. The island is surrounded by the Bartola or Muriganga river in the north and east, Hoogly river is flowing in the west and in the south by Bay of Bengal.

There is a Myth behind the holy Gangasagar. According to certain beliefs there was a hindu king Sagar at the time of Satya Yug. he performed Ashyamedh Yajna. The symbol of power of this Yajna is the Horse. The lord of heaven Indra had stolen the horse and kept it by the side of the Ashrama of Kapil, the great saga. King Sagar had 60,000 sons (!!) and they started searching. After a long time they found the horse near the Ashram of Kapil, the great saga. Kapil did not know anything about the fact and the sons of Sagar blamed him suspecting that The saga for staling the horse. Kapil got fired and gave the curse to turn all the princes into ash.

After such a mishap King Sagar came to The great saga and begged for his mercy. At first Kapil was not impressed at all but lastly he told Sagar the way of reviving the princes – He told to Sagar that the princes would again be alive if their ashes were washed by the holy water on Ganga by any means. After two generations, King Bhagirath was able to please God and with the help of Lord Shiva he bought this Ganga down to the Earth. Ths ashes of his fore-father were washed by the holy water of Ganga and the 60,000 sons of Sagar got enlightened. From then on thousands of people came here at Gangasagar to purify their soul and to wash out their sins in the holy Ganga.

My intention was not to pollute the river with my sins… I just wanted to watch this celebration of life…

This is what I saw – for your viewing pleasure – Shome Adhikary

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