Varanasi/Allahabad, Aug 17 : Hundreds of devotees today took a holy dip in River Ganges to ward off negative effects of lunar eclipse.
Fear of eclipses prompts people to conduct various rituals. Holy dip is one such ritual, which is done with a belief that it would ward off all the negative effects of the eclipse.
"Hundreds of devotees have come here as it holds a great significance. People had started to come in since night only. Many devotees took bath at 1.30 in the night only," said Kishori Raman, a priest.
Large numbers of devotees also thronged Sangam, a confluence of rivers Ganges and Yamuna, in Allahabad, to bathe in the river to ward off negative effects of the lunar eclipse.
The devotees lighted lamps and offered prayers as they stood in the river.
Eclipses have always been considered harmful according to Hindu astrology.
Many beliefs and practices are followed in relation to the eclipses, both solar and lunar, across the country. It is believed that these eclipses have a negative impact on the general well being of the people.
India witnessed a partial phase of the eclipse, which began at 1:06:07 a.m. (local time) on August 16, and ended at 4:14:16 a.m. (local time) on August 17.