Hoofing it to camel fair

This herdsman was among the thousands who had gone to the famous Pushkar Camel Fair in India's Rajasthan state with their livestock.

The annual event held in the small temple town of Pushkar is one of the largest trade fairs for camels in the world.

The week-long affair, which began last Saturday, is a grand spectacle that attracts not just traders from all over the desert state, but also tourists, who never fail to be impressed by the scale of the event as well as the cultural extravaganza, including unique entertainment like a competition for the longest moustache.

Over 500,000 domestic visitors attended the fair in 2015, according to the Financial Express. This year, a further increase of 10 per cent in tourist arrivals is expected.

The Pushkar Camel Fair is also tied to religious festivities that fall on the month of Kartik, as per the Hindu lunar calendar.

Thus, while most of the cattle trading is done in the first half of the week, the latter half sees pilgrims visiting the local temples and taking ritual baths in the Pushkar Lake on the full-moon night of the month, known as Kartik Poornima.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 30, 2017, with the headline 'Hoofing it to camel fair'. Print Edition | Subscribe