Big Picture

Pulling their weight together

Labourers hauling a pontoon to construct a temporary bridge for the Magh Mela festival on the river Ganges in Allahabad, India, yesterday.

The festival is an annual religious event held during the Hindu month of Magh, when hundreds of thousands of Hindu devotees take holy dips in the waters of the Ganges.

Next year, Magh Mela will be held from Jan 14 to March 7. During this period, many Hindus will bath at the Sangam, which is at the confluence of the Ganges, Yamuna and mythical Saraswati rivers.

Hindus believe that taking this holy dip will cleanse them of their sins, with many staying in makeshift houses or tents in the area during the festival.

This congregation of believers is considered one of the largest peaceful gatherings in the world.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 16, 2015, with the headline 'Pulling their weight together'. Print Edition | Subscribe