Playing host to pilgrims

Published : Sep 10, 2004 00:00 IST

VIJAYAWADA city is full of verve and activity. Everywhere there is colour and life. One cannot help but notice how the roads and public places are spotless and the sidewalks gleam, before the commencement of the Krishna Pushkaram on August 28.

The initial discord over inadequate funds faded to pave way for a spirit of camaraderie among officials and elected representatives, which helped create a climate of bonhomie.

Pilgrims from every nook and corner of the State throng the banks of the Krishna during the Pushkaram. The sight of the Pushkar ghats brings to mind the several legends associated with the river.

A little away from the river is the magnificent Sri Durga Malleswara Swamy temple, which has Goddess Kanakadurga as its presiding deity. The temple, on the Indrakeeladri hill, has a mystique charm and grace.

The temple authorities have embarked on a series of steps to make it convenient for pilgrims to move from one place to the other with ease. Since devotees would head straight to the Durga temple atop the hill after a dip in the Krishna, a foot overbridge has been constructed from the Durga ghat, one of the main bathing ghats, to the hilltop. This would enable people to reach Indrakeeladri, without having to face the heavy traffic on the road. The road from the "Om turning" point on the hill, which leads to the temple, has been covered with tarpaulin to protect pilgrims from rain.

In addition to proper sanitation facilities in and around the bathing ghats, a waste water sump has been constructed on the land adjacent to the Durga ghat. Women can change their clothes after a dip in the temporary sheds attached to the ghats.

Visitors are in for a pleasant surprise as audio-visual programmes have been arranged for them.

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