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Fairs

Maharashtra is one of those states where religious sentiments are always high. People are always willing to enjoy festivals and have fun through their unconditional devotion to God. There are many festivals celebrated in this city that provide ample opportunities for the people of Maharashtra to enjoy and revel. Irrespective of their hectic lives and numerous problems that surround them, Maharashtrians are always looking for an opportunity to devote their time to God and revel in the festivities.

The most important festival here is Ganesh Chaturthi that involves the homecoming of lord Ganesh. People bring idols of lord Ganesh to their homes and after worshipping it for ten days, the idol is immersed on the tenth day. Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated with great pomp and it is worthwhile to watch the festivities in Maharashtra during the ten day long festival.

Maharashtra has great cultural diversity and is home to different people with different social and economic backgrounds. The festivities in Maharashtra offer happiness to each and every person residing in the state. The much celebrated Kumbh mela is held at Nasik once in every 12 years and is marked by a turnout in millions from all parts of the world. This is the biggest fair in Maharashtra wherein people from India and abroad participate and visit.

Sangli and Pune are the two cities where the festivities during Ganesh Chaturthi are felt the most. The people of this state repose immense faith in Lord Ganesha and welcome him with open hands and hearts every year. Few of the prominent temple fairs include Rathyatra at the Kalaram temple in Nashik, Changdeo fair at the Markandeya temple near Edlabad, and the Shrirama Rathotsava fair and the Navaratra Mahalaxmi fair at the Navaratra Mahalaxmi temple in Jalgaon, Kiran Utsav at the Mahalaxmi temple at Kolhapur.

One of the biggest fairs for Muslims is the Khuldabad Urs. The Mount Mary Church in Bandra, Mumbai organizes the Mount Mary festival that lasts a week and is organized in the month of September. At Battis Shirala town, the Snake festival attracts huge number of tourists from every corner of the world.

Changdeo Fair

Changdeo in Maharashtra is a place of religious interest because it is located beside the sacred rivers, Purna and Tapi. These rivers have their religious importance in Hindu mythology and people take a sacred dip in the holy waters of these rivers once in a year. This place gains more religious prominence as it is believed to be the place where Saint Markandeya did his penance.

The Changdeo fair is attended by approximately 80,000 pilgrims every year. This fair is held during the month of Magha (January-February) every year. The pilgrims mostly hail from the Vidarbha region of Maharashtra.

Nagpur airport is the nearest air route for Changdeo and is located at a distance of 177 km from the holy place. This place is better connected by rail transport and the nearest railway station in Chandrapur is 91 km away. The Milswali-Sakhri route provides fastest access to Changdeo via road. Proper accommodation facilities can be found in Gadchiroli which is quite close to Changdeo.

Kiran Utsav

Kiran Utsav is another important festival in India that is celebrated with great enthusiasm in Maharashtra. The Mahalaxmi Temple at Kolhapur is the hub of this festival and Goddess Laxmi is worshipped in this temple on 31st January, 1st February and 9th – 11th November of every year.
The Mahalaxmi Temple wears a new and gorgeous look during this festival. Millions of devotees flock the temple to gain the blessings of the Goddess of Wealth. The Mahalaxmi Temple has been built beautifully in such a way so that the rays of the sun that enters the temple will touch the feet of the Goddess before they disappear.

Nashik Kumbh Mela

One of those religious meets that is marked by great enthusiasm and fervor all around India as well as in some parts abroad is the Kumbh Mela that is organized once every three years and rotates amidst the four holy places of Haridwar, Nasik, Ujjain and Allahabad. The Maha Kumbh is held at Nasik every twelfth year and is marked by great festivities.

The Rath Yatra

The main attraction of the janmotsava involves the start of Rathyatra that starts from the east door of the temple and proceeds throughout the city of Nasik. The Ram Rath and the Garuda Rath are part of the grand procession that leaves temple doors on the second day at about 4:30 pm.

The Rathyatra is of 5 links: the bullock cart of Sanai / Choughada is the 1st, lined with the Palki of Shri Ramachandra followed by the Pujadhikari, Garudarath (the rath of Lord Hanuman) and finally the Ramrath (the rath of Lord Rama).

The Pujadhikari is supposed to walk right throughout the festivities of Rathyatra with his hands folded towards the rath. The Pujadhikari undergoes a stringent fast that goes on for as long as the festival is celebrated that is from the first day of Chaitra to Rathyatra. The Raths are pulled by sevaks from different social institutions with the help of heavy rope. The ‘Dhuri’ is a heavy wooden round rod the Rath possess.

 

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Fairs and Festivals in Rajasthan 1
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Fairs and Festivals in Rajasthan 1
Fairs and Festivals in Rajasthan 2

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