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JammuThousands of devotees converge in Doda to celebrate ‘Nag Baisakhi’ festival

Thousands of devotees converge in Doda to celebrate ‘Nag Baisakhi’ festival


Tawi, Apr 12: Thousands of devotees on Friday converged at the ancient high-altitude Subar-Nag temple here in Doda district to celebrate ‘Nag Baisakhi' festival to welcome spring after prolonged harsh winters.

The festival started with the opening of doors of an ancient 12,000-foot-high temple at Subar Dhar, 35 Km from Bhaderwah town, officials said.

Hundreds of devotees converged at the hilltop meadow surrounded by snow-peaked mountains after trekking 12 km steep hill to pay their obeisance to the Lord Subar Nag. Traditionally devotees used to sacrifice dozens of sheep, but this year due to the ongoing Navratri festival, this ancient custom was not performed.

“Devotees from the different parts of the valley including Chinta, Bhlaara and Sharora arrive here with holy mace to seek blessings of Lord Subhar Nag,” temple's head priest Anil Kumar Raina said after opening the doors this morning.

Locals demanded that the ancient spring festival which is celebrated since time immemorial be brought under pilgrimage .

“This is not only an ancient and historic festival symbolising the unique Nag but the temple is also located amidst lush green grasslands surrounded with snow peaked mountains,” said Sakshi Sharma (23), a pilgrim from Kotli.

“Having all the ingredients to attract devotees and tourists from across the globe, the tourism department and BDA (Bhaderwah Development Authority) has done nothing concrete so far to project it as a pilgrimage destination,” she said.

She said, “After four months of dull life, during which we mostly remain indoors due to harsh climatic conditions and snow, this festival which marks the new spring season, not only rejuvenates us but also gives us a chance to meet our relatives and friends.”

According to an official handout, as many as 12,500 devotees including 7,500 women visited the ancient temple.

To serve community food and to keep the high-altitude meadow clean and free from plastic waste, Langar Committee Chinta made all the necessary arrangements.

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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