The Telegraph
Wednesday , February 5 , 2014
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State basks in puja, panchami revelry

Around one lakh pilgrims, mostly belonging to Mithilanchal and other parts of Himalayan region on Tuesday offered puja at Baidyanath Dham in Deoghar and Basukinath Dham in Dumka on the auspicious occasion of Basant Panchami.

The devotees also performed rituals to mark tilkotsav of Lord Shiva at both the temples.

According to Hindu mythology, Goddess Parvati, who is married to Shiva, is the daughter of Himalaya. So the residents of Himalayan region, including Nepalese, identify themselves as associated with her parents’ family.

As such they turnout in huge number on every Basant Panchami to solemnise the tilkotsav, which is the initial ritual of Hindu marriage.

Durlabh Mishra, general secretary of Akhil Bhartiya Tirth Purohit Samaj and a local priest of Baidyanath temple said the practice dates back to time immemorial.

“Earlier saints and religious practitioners from Himalaya used to come over here for the purpose which in course of time was adopted by the common people,” Mishra said, adding that the number of such pilgrims was growing with each passing year.

Notably, Baidyanath Dham enjoys the status of one of the dwadash jyotirlingams, which has the dual distinction of being a Shakti Peetha and hence attracts a huge crowd from across the country and abroad on almost all auspicious occasions.

“The pilgrims offer abir and gulal to Shiva apart from newly harvested seasonal crops such as mustard flower, paddy flower among others,” Mishra added.

Both the temples wore a festive look, with pilgrims singing religious songs devoted to Shiva and Parvati.