A visual feast- Godavari harathi

-Sahithi

Godavari harathi is given to Goddess Godavari Matha(river godavari) showing gratitude as it is the lifeline of the state for irrigation,agriculture and drinking purposes .Though east godavari is my native place.  I admit I am still not aware of many of the secrets that this district holds. Although I no longer stay in Andhra Pradesh, whenever I visit this place I see it with new eyes and it never fails to surprise me. During one of my visits recently I came to know of Godavari harathi. We travelled for 30mintues  from Jaggampeta to reach Rajahmundry.We walked through the lanes of the east exploring all nearby temples and markets. It’s a crowded place full of people.

 As we reached Pushkar Ghat there were very few people and we settled comfortably on the stairs of the ghat. we can see the harathi from the steps and the boats.Meanwhile one pujari came to me seeing camera in my hand and suggested me a place to be seated  where many photojournalists click pictures.As dusk slowly descended many people started gathering at the place and the harathi begins by lighting up the multi-tiered ceremonial brass lamps and a well-synchronised and rhythmic chanting of the holy mantras. While, some of the pujari’s blow the conch shells to sanctify the atmosphere, other priests begin waving the incense sticks to worship Godavari Matha.They were about 50 pujari’s  gathered to perform this event.I was so thankful to the pujari who suggested me a place as i got good pictures in that huge crowd of people. 

I found many happy faces enjoying the beauty of this harathi with families and friends.sitting on the bank of godavari river. The holy river flowing from time eternal, cool breeze, the scent of the incense sticks, the sound of the sacred bells,under a beautiful moonlight changed the entire atmosphere and we cannot help but experience divinity all around.Even I lost mesmerizing the moment.As the time passed Harathi ended. The crowd slowly dispersed the ghat, The place which was alight with the lamps and sounds of the prayer bells before now looked empty, dark and forlorn.

Meanwhile We also left but with an experience to cherish forever.

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