Lakhs of devotees take holy dip at Chandrabhaga beach on ‘Magha Saptami’

Puri: On the occasion of ‘Magha Saptami’, lakhs of devotees from all around Odisha and outside the State gathered at the Chandrabhaga beach in Konark of Puri district today to take holy dip and offer prayers to Sun God.

“It is believed that anyone who takes dip in the sea on the day of Magha Saptami reaps virtues of many lifetimes, so we stayed awake all night long to bath early in the morning,” said a devotee.

After customary bathing of the dieties– Lord Tribeniswara of Madhipur, Lord Aisaneswara of Santhapur and Dakhineswara of Kurujanga– at 3.50 am today, sadhus from all around the country took holy dip and offered obeisance to Sun God. Later, devotees who had been camping on the Magha Saptami mela ground since Monday bathed in the sea and offered prayers.

Earlier yesterday, the deities were initially taken in grand processions on the occasion of ‘Magha Sasthi’ and later marched towards towards Tirtha mandap set up near the Chandrabhaga beach.

“Magha Saptami is marked as the birthday of Sun God. On this day, Sun was born after the union of Rishi Kashyap and Aditi. Anyone who takes dip on this day is relieved of all sins and earns good fortune and salvation,” said Aditya Charan Das, Mahant of Abaduta Matha said.

As per rituals, on the seventh day of the waxing phase of the Odia month of Magha, people throng Konark, the most important destination for worshipping Sun God to take holy dip in the sea with the age-old belief that it would wash away their sins.

On the other hand, to ensure safety and security of the pilgrims, the district administration has made adequate security arrangements at Chandrabhaga,” informed Puri SP Sarthak Sarangi.

“30 platoons of forces and other senior police officials have been deployed at the spot to maintain law and order. Around 50 life guards, ODRAF personnel have also been roped into service to prevent any mishap during public bathing in the sea,” Sarangi said.