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14 Jan 2013 11:36 GMT
Millions of Hindu devotees gather in the northern Indian city of Allahabad for the religious festival of Kumbh Mela
Worshippers believe that bathing in the River Ganges during the festival will absolve them from sin
Kumbh Mela or the Pitcher festival is held in Allahabad once every 12 years
Indian policemen on horseback clear the way for a religious procession near the banks of the Ganges
A Sadhu, or a Hindu holy man, smokes marijuana on the banks of river Ganges ahead of the festival
Sadhus, give up worldly pleasures and live away from the mainstream Indian life and culture
The Kumbh Mela is believed to be the largest gathering of Hindus in the world
According to Hinduism, it is believed that on a certain day at a certain time, four drops from a cask of heavenly nectar landed in four locations along the route of the River Ganges
It is the most revered of rivers in the Hindu faith, even though it is one of the five of the most polluted rivers in the world
Millions of Hindus immerse themselves into the confluence of the Yamuna and Ganga, which meets with the mythical river Saraswati, during the 55 -day festival
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