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Pushkar - Cattle Capital

Pushkar - the cattle capital

INDIA | Sunday, 17 October 2010 | Views [449]

The fair ground

The fair ground

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Pushkar, one of the oldest towns of India, is one of the most sacred pilgrimage sites for the Hindus and a popular destination for foreign tourists. It is near a lake where pilgrims take the holy dip. Considered pious to Hindus it is doted with hundreds of temples, holy men, pilgrims and tourists.


In the eighth lunar month of the Hindu calendar, a huge number of camels, horses, cows, bullocks, sheep, goats and many other cattle congregate at Pushkar for the week-long fair devoted to them. The place becomes extraordinary swirl of color sound and movement, thronged with musicians, mystics, tourists, traders, and animals and devotes.


At the fair the animals are beautified, raced, paraded, sold and purchased. The other aspect of the fair includes musicians, snake-charmers, children balancing on poles and events like walking on hot coals. The fair also serves as a meeting point for parents to seek a match for their children as well as a partner to mate their cattle.


The fair is predominantly a rural gathering, where villagers from different parts of state come with their animals and lakes are flooded with the pilgrims for the holy dips. The sudden arrival of people and beasts turn the parched & barren landscape of the desert into a riot of colors - the large turbans of men and the loud hues of the pleated ankle-length skirts of women bejeweled from head to toe.


Travel and documenting places is a medium of self-discovery and a dialogue with self. Besides meeting new people and culture, a travel scholarship with an expert would provide an education which otherwise would take considerable time to acquire. It would give me greater confidence to undertake such challenging assignments and help me overcome my shortcomings of telling a story through images.


Tags: cattle fair, holy men, pushkar, rajasthan

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