California to host first Kumbh Mela in US


Norwalk, California: The city will host the first ever Kumbh Mela that is being held outside of India on Saturday.

Kumbh Mela is one of the most important celebrations in Hinduism. It is the largest congregation of Hindu saints and devotees that is held once in three years on the banks of River Ganga in one of the four cities- Haridwar, Prayaga, Nashik and Ujjain in rotation.

The Akhil Bharatiya Akhada Parishad (ABAP) which has been organizing the Kumbh Mela in India from time immemorial, is now organizing this Kumbh Mela in Excelsior Grounds, Norwalk.

The Kumbh Mela will start at 2 PM California time and will include a Rudra Homa to be performed for bringing rain; followed by a procession of various deities brought from various North American temples, followed by Maha Snan (the great bath) in waters that has been sanctified with water brought from India, and the Maha Arati (the great lamp offering), according to the press release issued by the organizers.

The event will also include a video message by Paramahamsa Nithyananda, a popular Hindu monk in India; a keynote address by well-known Hindu authors Rajiv Malhotra and Stephan Knapp, and various cultural programs.

The event is scheduled to run till 9 PM California time and will include serving of free food to all the participants. Around 3000 people are expected to participate in the event.