data on which the Moon in the month of Magha conjoins with Jupiter is considered
specially auspicious, and sacred. On this occasion according to belief, this tank receives fresh
supplies of water from the Ganges and eight other equally holy rivers.
A bath at this hour washes off sins and ensures merit. Besides, all the
august deities of Hindu pantheon are said to be present in this thirtha
then making it skill more sacred, nay the most sacred. Moreover, a great fair is held during this period.
No wonder, lakhs of people visit, and it becomes extremely difficult
to the government to cater to the needs of the visiting public.
It is celebrated in the honour of
Kumbheswara Swamy. This alone of the South Indian river festivals
ranks with the Kumbha Mela of the North. In addition to is 12-year-Mela of All-India
importance, a mini - festival is held every year in the month of
Magha, when the image of Lord Kumbheswara is brought to this place for the ceremonial bath called
Avabhritha Utsav. This also has great pull, but less in pomp.
With many more shrines - small and in scores, this holy thirtha kshetra has
been attracting theists since yugas. Staying for a week and visiting each
one confers great merit worthy of craving.