A LARGE number of devotees thronged the famous Mahakaleshwar temple here for darshan on the occasion of Mahashivratri here on Friday.
Elaborate security arrangements had been made in and around the temple to facilitate comfortable darshan to pilgrims. Although, the darshan began after the Bhasmaarti at 5 am, people started queuing right from previous night. Large number of devotees from various parts of the country visited the temple.
With the expansion of the Nandi grah few years back, the time for waiting in queue has been reduced to an hour instead of 4-5 hours previously. Four rows of devotees were running simultaneously before the sanctum sanctorum. The new arrangement was largely welcomed by the people.
Mahashivratri festival is the wedding ceremony of Lord Shiva and so special ‘sehra’ will be put up at the Shivlings on Sunday as Shiva wears a bridegroom look. The ritual of ‘Bhasma Arti’ that is normally held at 3 am took place at 12 noon.
Several social organisations extended support to the administration in maintaining discipline. Ujjaini Sewa Samiti distributed prasad of fariyali khichri.
VIP disruption again
Although the administrative officials had contended during meeting last week that no VIPs would be entertained at the temple as this creates problems for the common people and disrupts their queues, the scene during Bhasma Arti was all together different.
State culture minister Laxmikant Sharma, BJP leader Kaptan Singh Solanki and his family members remained at the sanctum sanctorum. Devotees were not happy with their presence, as they felt that every human being should be treated equal at the temple.