Ganga or The Ganges is one of the most prominent rivers of India and today we will discuss about a festivity which takes places annually in the city of Varanasi known as the Ganga Mahotsav or the Ganges Festival so let us learn about Ganga Mahotsav 2013. The water of river Ganges is supposed to have the purity that can wash the sins of many births.
Ganga Mahotsav 2013
The festival in this year namely 2013 is starting on 13th November to 16th November, which basically means that as we publish this post, the festival is already underway and it starts from the day of Kartik Poornima.
About Banaras or Varanasi
Varanasi is a beautiful city that has a lot of significance for the Hindus. The Ganga mahotsav is an attempt to celebrate the glory and the history of this mystical city. People visit the city of Varanasi and pray to the Goddess Ganga to wash away their sins. You need to stand in the river with water of Ganga in your palms. Put some flowers into the water and pray to her for forgiveness. Thank her for all her blessings. Throw this water and the flower into the flowing waters of the river Ganga. After this prayer float a diya with ghee or oil in the river. You can do this ritual even during the Ganga mahotsav.
If you happen to visit the city during Ganga mahotsav you will see a huge number of people praying and floating diyas in the river. It is a beautiful scene. The magic of the city comes alive during these five days. This is one reason that many renowned photographers also come to the Varanasi to capture the glimpses of the Ganga mahotsav every year. There are total eighty four ghats in the city of Varanasi and this scene is common in all these ghats.
Combination of Indian Art & Religion
The Ganga mahotsav is a significant proof how Indian art and religion have evolved with time. In the olden days the kings would spend a huge sum of money in training talented dancers and singers who would perform in the temples. The singers and dancers were renowned and were a pride of the kingdom. Most of the classical songs and dance in India describe religious stories and revolve around the gods and their lives.
This is exactly why the art of India has such a close connect with the religion. The Ganga mahotsav is perhaps the best place to feel how the art and religion of India come along in harmony. It is a unique experience for all and fills everyone with peace and happiness. The country of India is known for her Spirituality, her religious beliefs and her culture. The Ganga mahotsav is the best stage where all these come together.
You must be wondering why the Ganga mahotsav 2013 is held in Varanasi alone. Well the river Ganga has been nourishing the Varanasi civilization for a long time now this is why it is celebrated with so much enthusiasm in this city. It is a river that unites the India and gives it a secular look. All Hindus ensure that once in a lifetime they definitely take a dip in this holy river. The Ganga mahotsav is celebrated at the banks of the river Ganga every year. The aim is to thank the river for serving her children and removing the sins from them.
There is a huge fair that is arranged during the Ganga mahotsav. Handicrafts from across the country are on display in these fairs. It is a good chance for these artisans to do business. The visitors and the tourists visit these fairs and they pick up these works of Indian handicraft and cottage industry. The market that displays these stalls is called the Gandhi Shilp bazaar. The entry fee to this market is as low as ten rupees or few cents per person.
The city of Varanasi has been a centre for religious happenings for a long time. It can be connected to many historic and pre historic events. If you want to enjoy the Ganga mahotsav you must do your bookings long in advance. The city of Varanasi has many hotels and lodges to stay. These are all full during the day’s o f the Ganga mahotsav. When you get your bookings done in advance you will be able to ensure that you get a good chance to enjoy the Ganga mahotsav. There are many trains and flights that connect Varanasi to the rest of the country that you must book in advance. Else you will not get any bookings during the Ganga mahotsav 2013 or any other year for that matter.
Some prominent Indian artists who perform during the Ganga mahotsav are Ustab Bismillah Khan, Vilayat Khan, Bal Murli Krishnan, Pundit Chhanulal Misra, Girija Devi, Sujat Khan, Birju Maharaj, Bhimsen Joshi, Amjad Ali Khan, Zakir Hussein and Zila Khan. The list is a long one. You just name your favorite artists and they have had a performance in the Ganga mahotsav. The classical dancers and singers consider it a privilege to get a chance to perform at the Ganga mahotsav. The events that are scheduled for the Ganga mahotsav 2013 are listed below:
- Shehnai Recital by Shri Ramashankar 0n 13th November 2013.Duet-Flute & Saxophone on 13th November again by Pt. Ronu Majumdar (Mumbai) & Padmashri Dr. Kadri Gopalnath (Chennai).
- Sufi music by the renowned artist Kailash kher on 13th November 2013.
- Classical music on 14th November by Pt. Ajay Pohankar.Duet- Kathak & Bharat Natyam by Ms. Rani Khanam & Ms. Rama Vaidyanathan on 14th November.
- Pt. Hari Prasad Chaurasia will be playing flute on 14th November 2013.
- A magical sarod performance by Shri Amaan Ali Khan & Ayaan Ali Khan on 14th November 2013.Mohan Veena & Rajasthani Folk art by Padmashri Pt. Vishwa Mohan Bhatt and Magniyar on 15th November.
- Ms Anuradha Podwal will perform vocal music on 15th November 2013.
- Goti Pua that is afolk dance of Orissa will be performed Nakshyatra Gurukul on 15th November 2013.
- Shri Abhay Rustum Sopori will play santoor on 16th November 2013.
- Padmashri Swami G.C.D. Bharti will give Kabir gyan on 16th November 2013.
- Padmashri Shovana Narayan will do a group kathak ballet on 16th Nobember 2013.
These are some of the points and facts that make the Ganga mahotsav so much important and special. We would recommend the readers to visit the Ganga mahotsav and enjoy the spirit of India. If you are a person who loves classical music then you must make it a point to visit the Ganga mahotsav. The same is held every year. This year in 2013 the Ganga mahotsav has already begun since 13th November.
Ganga Mahotsav 2014 Dates
You can ensure a visit next year 0f 2014. The dates of Ganga mahotsav 2014 are 3rd November to 5th November 2014. It is an eagerly awaited cultural festival by not only the people of India but the people of the world so you must make your bookings way in advance. The Ganga mahotsav started from the year 2003. It has been a huge success and every year more and more tourists are visiting the Ganga mahotsav from India and across the world.
It is estimated that in the next year the number of visitors will only increase. In the year 2003 about 2809733 visitors came in and in 2012 the number went up to 5061585. This shows how successful and popular the Ganga mahotsav has become in about a decade.