Kathmandu [Nepal], July 18 (ANI): Deepu Thakur along with three other friends took a dip in the Bagmati River on the hillside of Sundarijal, 14 Kilometers from Kathmandu, collected sacred water, performed some rituals and then set off barefoot for Pashupatinath Temple.
The group of Deepu also known as "Kanwariyas" draped in orange robes, barefoot and with bottles in their hand or their back has returned back on the roads of Kathmandu as the restrictions of COVID-19 have been relaxed.
"On the month of Shrawan (Monday) we come here at Sundarijal, take a bath and carry sacred water up to Pashupatinath Temple and offer there. We have been doing this for our own satisfaction and to get rid of sins," Deepu told ANI.
Kanwariyas are a group of Hindu devotees of Lord Shiva, the saviour of the universe who set off on pilgrimage every Monday in the month of Shrawan. They throng nearby water resources to fetch the holy water and walk barefoot to the Shiva Shrine and offer them.
Sundarijal is one of the nearby water resources which contributes to the formation of the Bagmati River that flows through Kathmandu, as well as Pashupatinath Temple, is a likeable place for Kanwariyas.
"It's for the Pashupatinath Temple we always reach out to Sundarijal to fetch pure water, that water is sacred," Ram Ikbal Sahani, another Kanvaria who thronged the Pashupatinath Temple told ANI.
It takes about three hours for the pilgrims to walk on foot to the Pashupatinath Temple, the revered Hindu Shrine and UNESCO World Heritage Site. As the temple opened its doors for the pilgrims with ease in COVID-19 restrictions, the Kanwariyas are once again back and overjoyed.
"God will shower the happiness, God has the answer about my delight. I have been doing it for a long, it's on their hand when to grant them happiness," Sahani added.
Kanwariyas take part in the annual pilgrimage every Monday of Shrawan when they go around worshipping Lord Shiva donning their own self in fresh clothes and taking sacred meals that exclude garlic, onion and even grains.
The unmarried females keep fasting and take part in the procession praying for a good husband while married females fast for the longevity of their husband and the wellness of family members.
As per the religious belief, one's wishes are fulfilled and lord Shiva will shower fortune on the devotees who visit the shrines dedicated to him and pay homage after taking an early morning shower on the first Monday of the month of Shrawan.
Enlisted as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, Pashupati Temple has high importance for the followers of the Hindu Religion as Lord Shiva is regarded as the creator, destructor and preserver of the world.
Apart from its religious importance, the Pashupatinath Temple is also regarded as the saviour of Nepal in times of difficulties. A large swath of pilgrims from India and other countries come to Pashupatinath once in their life.
Apart from Pashupati other Shiva Temples or Shivalayas in the capital Kathmandu also witnessed the surge of devotees on the day that is devoted to Lord Shiva.
First, to report the infection of COVID-19 in late 2019, Nepal to date has recorded a total of 9,81,408 cases of infection with 11,953 deaths till 17 July 2022. (ANI)