In a celestial display witnessed by deities and sages alike, the city of Kashi emanated divine splendour during the Dev Deepawali celebration on the evening of Kartik Purnima, marking the culmination of the Kartik month. The remarkable scene unfolded as an impressive 21 lakh lamps illuminated the ghats of Kashi simultaneously, transforming the sacred city into a celestial abode. Among the enthralled spectators were ordinary citizens from around the world, 70 diplomats representing different countries, 150 delegates, and their families.

The essence of this ethereal celebration lay in the illumination of nearly 21 lakh lamps across Kashi, with over 12 lakh lamps adorning the crescent-shaped ghats, including an exceptional one lakh lamps meticulously crafted from cow dung. The radiant glow extended across the western bank ghats, the sands of the eastern bank, and various significant locations such as Markandeya Mahadev, Varuna Nadi's Shastri Ghat, and the banks of the Ganga-Gomati, creating a captivating spectacle. Collaborative efforts from the government, self-help organizations, and public participation contributed to the illumination, with the government alone providing 12 lakh lamps.

This year marked a historic moment as delegates from 70 countries, under the leadership of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, witnessed the unparalleled magnificence of Dev Deepawali. Elevated to the status of a regional fair, the event embraced a global audience, and the Chief Minister, accompanied by the Gorakhnath Peethadheeshwar, inaugurated the festivities by lighting the first lamp, symbolizing not only the commencement of the celebration but also a welcoming gesture to the divine entities.

Dev Deepawali in Kashi featured a series of events, including laser shows, cultural performances, and a spectacular display of green aerial fireworks on the Ganga's sands. The grand aarti at Dashashwamedh Ghat beautifully blended devotion to Lord Rama, nationalism, spirituality, and social consciousness, paying homage to the immortal soldiers of India with the 'Bhagirath Shourya Samman.'

The ghats of Kashi, adorned with 12 lakh lamps simultaneously and complemented by sound and light shows at Chet Singh Ghat, presented a seamless integration of mythological Kashi and artistic depictions of Lord Shiva. The entire city, including temples and ghats, embraced a harmonious blend of tradition and modernity, with illuminated facades, electric poles adorned with attractive tricolors, and a stunning green fireworks display across the Ganga.

Prominent features of the celebration included the decoration of Kashi Vishwanath Temple complex with 11 quintals of flowers and a laser show at the Ganga Dwar, providing insights into the significance of Kashi and information about the corridor through projections.

To ensure the safety of tourists and devotees, security arrangements were meticulously organized, dividing ghats into zones, sectors, and sub-sectors. This comprehensive security plan included pink booths for women's safety, deployment of the Anti-Romeo squad, and strict enforcement of traffic rules on water routes.

Dev Deepawali in Kashi this year surpassed mere spiritual celebrations, standing as a testament to the harmonious fusion of tradition, modernity, and global participation, creating an indelible experience for all witnesses of its radiant splendour.

Rishika Kukrety

Rishika Kukrety

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