Deodhani festival in Assam draws pilgrims from across India

Guwahati (Assam) [India], Aug 23 (ANI): Known for its magical beauty and bewildering diversity, Kamakhya temple in India's northeast region is one of the most revered religious tourism hotspots. Located on the top of the Nilachal hills in Assam's Guwahati city, Kamakhya temple recently was flooded with hordes of devotees from various parts of the country to celebrate the three-day renowned Deodhani Hindu Dance Festival. The Deodhani festival is dedicated to Serpent Goddess Kamakhya. It is believed that Goddess Kamakhya fulfills the wishes of the devotees who take part in this festival. Deodhani dance is a semi-classical dance form, which is common across the southwest Kamrup and Mangaldoi parts of Assam. Talking about the festival, president of the Kamakhya Devalaya, Kabind Ra Prasad Sharma said, "Deodhani dance fest is being celebrated since decades and it is especially dedicated to serpent goddess. During this time, men are possessed with the power of Devi and Devta and they perform the Deodhani dance. In Nilachal hills, there are temples of different deities and it is believed that men receive power from Goddess Kamakhya and they perform Deodhani Nritya." During the festival, the temple premises was filled with the sound of drums and cymbals and the chanting of hymns by the priests who were dressed in the festive attire. Celebrated in the month of 'Sawan', this festival begins during Sankranti and men possessed with the power of 'Ma' dance to the rhythm of drums and beats. During the three-day long fair, men dress as their respective deities, wore garlands and pay obeisance to their respective shrines. Priest of the Kamakhya temple, Mohish Chandra Sharma said, "The devotees participating in the festival go through a month-long preparatory phase, during which they are not permitted to meet their families and have to stay in the temple premises with a photograph of the deity they want to represent." Fairs and festivals form an essential part of India's northeast region. Every state of the region has its own unique way to celebrate festivals with different fervor.(ANI)
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