Ardh Kumbh Mela 2019, Allahabad, India.

Millions of people walking along the bridges and crossing the three sacred rivers, as far as the eye can see. Once in their life they are called to accomplish this duty.

The Kumbh Mela is a pilgrimage of faith for Hindus looking to wash their past sins. Kumbh Mela is a congregation of millions, gathered together to be freed from the vicious earthly cycle of life and death and move towards a heavenly realm, which knows no suffering or pain. Kumbh mela takes place every twelve years, at four places Prayag (Allahabad), Haridwar, Ujjain, and Nashik, based on planetary movements. Kumbh Mela has been celebrated in each of the four places since long as one can remember.

‘Kumbh’ literally means nectar. The story behind the mela goes back to the time when the gods used to reside on earth. Sage Durvasa’s curse had weakened them, and the demons caused havoc in the world. Lord Brahma advised them to churn out the nectar of immortality with the help of the demons. When the demons got to know of the gods plan to not share the nectar with them, they chased them for 12 days. During the chase, some of the nectar fell at four locations.  The Kumbh Mela is held on the dates when the waters of these sacred rivers are said to turn into nectar. The exact dates are calculated according to a combination of zodiac positions of Jupiter, the Sun and the Moon. Hindus believe that those who bathe in the sacred waters during the Kumbh are eternally blessed by the divine. All their sins are washed away and they come one step closer to salvation. 

Khumb Mela