The festival of Maha Shivratri, celebrated every year on the new moon day in the month of Maaha of the Hindu calendar to celebrate the marriage of Lord Shiva with Goddess Parvati, was celebrated with religious fervour and traditional gaiety in Nashik district and city, on Friday.
Devotees turned out in large numbers at famous Kapaleshwar, Someshwar and Trimbakeshwar temples and other shrines in the city and offered ‘bel’ leaves, milk and payers to the ‘Shivling’. The devotees observed fast, night-long vigil and chanted ‘Om Namah Shivaya’ mantra to appease Lord Shiva on the occasion.
Lakhs of devotees gathered at ancient Shiva temple in the small town of Trimbakeshwar at the foothills of Brahamagiri mountain in the district – one of the 12 ‘jyotirlingas’ in the country – since Thursday to witness the ‘mahapuja’ of the ‘lingam’ at midnight. The ‘shiva linga’ here is not cylindrical upwards but inward like a bowl, which is considered as the unison of the Trinity – Lords Bramha, Vishnu and Mahesh.
Similarly, thousands of Shiva devotees took a holy dip in Ramkund in Godavari river and offered prayers at Kapaleshwar temple in Panchavati area. They also visited the Someshwar temple on the Godavari river and sought blessings of Lord Shiva.
The longer queues of devotees were seen outside ancient Someshwar temple in Gangapur village. The area wore a fair like look on the day. Police maintained a strict vigil in temple vicinity to prevent any untoward incident.