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Important Facts For Prelims

Ambubachi Mela Cancelled

  • 24 Apr 2020
  • 2 min read

Why in News

In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, the annual Ambubachi Mela in Assam will not be organised this year.

  • The fair is organised from 21st to 25th June, every year.

Key Points

  • The festival marks the annual menstruation of the presiding Goddess in the Kamakhya Temple, Guwahati, Assam.
    • The temple’s sanctum sanctorum houses the yoni (female genital) symbolised by a rock.
  • Kamakhya is one of 51 shakti peethas or holy sites for the followers of the Shakti cult, each representing a body part of the Sati, Lord Shiva’s companion.
  • The temple is situated on the Nilachal Hills, whose northern face slopes down to the Brahmaputra river.
  • According to the legends, it was built by the demon king Narakasura but records are available only from 1565 when Koch king Naranarayana rebuilt the temple.

Importance

  • Cultural: The ritualistic fair celebrates the Goddess’ period due to which taboo associated with menstruation is less in Assam compared to other parts of India.
    • The attainment of womanhood of girls in Assam is celebrated with a ritual called Tuloni Biya, meaning small wedding.
  • Social: The fair is also an occasion to promote menstrual hygiene among the visitors through the use of sanitary pads.
  • Financial: Assam records a footfall of at least 5 lakh devotees during the fair mainly from West Bengal, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand. Foreigners also visit which boost the state tourism and the revenues associated.

Source: TH

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