Konark: Lakhs of pilgrims thronged to Chandrabhaga near Konark in Puri district on Sunday to take a holy dip and offer prayers to the Sun God on the occasion of Magha Saptami.
On the seventh day of the first half of the ‘Magha’ month, pilgrims took dip in Chandrabhaga with the age-old belief that a dip in the pond would cleanse them of skin diseases and wash away their sins.
Legend says, Shamba, the son of Lord Krishna, was cured of leprosy after taking holy dip at the Chandrabhaga on the seventh day of the bright half of the Hindu month of Magha.
The place where Shambha is said to have meditated and worshipped the Sun God after bathing in the pond for 12 years has become a sacred spot and devotees believe it has curative properties.
According to Hindu tradition, three deities, Tribeniswar, Aishaswar and Dakhineswar, were taken to Chandrabhaga fair ground on Saturday evening in a grand procession. At first the deities took a dip in Chandrabhaga. Later, the piligrims bathed in a holy pond.
Meanwhile, tight security arrangements have been made at Chandrabahaga for the safety and security of the pilgrims. As many as 30 platoons of forces, including two additional SPs, eight DSP rank officers, 22 inspectors and more than 130 sub-inspectors, have been deployed in the spot to avoid any untoward incident.
The Public Works department has put two temporary watch towers besides setting up barricades around the Chandrabhaga coast to ensure smooth darshan for the pilgrims.