hindu men covered in white vibhuti holy ash running toward the ganges river - kumbh mela 2013 (india)

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A huge crowd of Hindu devotees, men and boys, heads towards the Ganges river at the Kumbh Mela 2013 Hindu festival near Allahabad (India).­

Kumbh Mela is the largest festival on Earth, taking place once every 12 years, with more than 50 million Hindu pilgrims gathering to pray and bathe in the holy Ganges river.­

Thousands of Hindu devotees (mostly naked men, with their bodies covered with ritual wood ash) run at dawn toward the bank of the Ganges river at the Sangam where they will take the Holy Dip.­ The Triveni Sangam is the confluence of the Yamuna and the Ganga (Ganges) rivers, and this is the holiest place to take the ritual baths during the Kumbh Mela.­

This was the early morning of Vasant Panchami Snan day, an important religious date for Hindu people and one of the most auspicious mornings for taking the holy bath in the Ganges river.­

For more info about Vibhuti, the Hindu holy ash, read en.­wikipedia.­org/­wiki/­Vibhuti.

For more information about Vasant Panchami (or Basant Panchami), read en.­wikipedia.­org/­wiki/­Vasant_­Panchami.

For more photos and info about the Kumbh Mela festival, read the album description.

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India 2013 Sadhus (Hindu holy men) - Babas Maha Kumbh Mela 2013
Kila Marg, Kumbh Mela Area I, Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh 211005, India