As many as 5,00,000 lord Shiva devotees are expected to appear to worship the deity at Kashi Vishwanath Temple in Uttar Pradesh's Varanasi during the month of Shravan, said the Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the temple.
Today marks the onset of the holy month of 'Sawan' (Shravan), which is considered to be the most auspicious month of the year.
The month holds great significance for devotees of Lord Shiva, who is the Supreme Lord, the creator, protector, and destroyer of the universe according to Hindu religious beliefs.
Although the Vishwanath Temple is always packed with devotees, the crowd, here, usually sees a significant surge during this month. Usually, the crowd started appearing at the temple site as well as the bank of the River Ganges.
It is also expected that besides the Kanwariyas, Lord Shiva's devotees from North India, South India, and Western India will start emerging from Monday onwards. Most of the devotees who appeared on the occasion of the first day of Shravan month felt delighted.
One of the devotees from Odisha, Nardeep Singh told ANI that he has come to have deity's 'darshan' on the very first day of the holy month of Sawan via road, as he has been very excited about the occasion since ever.
Another devotee Hemant Rao feels "fortunate enough" to have visited Kashi Vishwanath today.
Speaking about the importance of the occasion, one Bharat Pandey told ANI that the significance of worshipping Lord Shiva is always higher in this month, as compared to the one in the remaining 11 months.
"Starting from Guru Purnima to the Purnima of Raksha Bandhan, this 31-day festival is believed holiest,' Pandey said.
He further said that the priests stay most busy during this month.
"Since it is happening after a break of two years due to Corona, devotees are more excited to visit the deity and take the holy dip," he added.
During the month of Shravan, the devotees observe fasts on Mondays which are considered to be particularly auspicious days of the month. Lord Shiva is worshipped on Mondays throughout the year and the Mondays of this month are especially significant with the whole month being dedicated to the lord. The festival is celebrated predominantly in North India.
This year Sawan started on July 14 and will end on August 12. Four Mondays fall during this period- July 18, July 25, August 1, and August 8. (ANI)