From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Mela Kheerbhawani
Mains level : NA
Kashmiri Hindus, locally known as Pandits, will celebrate the Zyestha Ashtami at the Mata Kheerbhawani temple at Tulmulla in central Kashmir’s Ganderbal.
- The temple is dedicated to the goddess Ragnya Devi.
- The festival, known as Mela Kheerbhawani, is the largest gathering of Hindus in Kashmir after the annual Amarnath Yatra.
- Situated 30 km from Srinagar city, it is one of the most sacred pilgrimage sites for Kashmiri Hindus.
- The temple gets its name from kheer, or milk and rice pudding that pilgrims pour into the spring inside the temple complex as an offering to the goddess.
- Hundreds of local Muslims, too, traditionally join the celebrations.
Legend of the festival
- Legend has it that the water of the temple’s spring changes colour from white to red and black.
- The colour of the water is said to predict the impending future.
- If it changes to black, it is seen as inauspicious or an impending disaster.
- Kashmiri Pandits say that the water had turned black before they were forced to flee Kashmir during the militancy of 1990.
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Try this PYQ:
Q.Consider the following pairs:
- Chaliha Sahib Festival- Sindhis
- Nanda Raj Jaat Yatra- Gonds
- Wari-Warkari- Santhals
Which of the pairs given above is/are correctly matched?
(a) 1 only
(b) 2 and 3
(c) 1 and 3
(d) None of the above
Post your answers here.