All arrangements in place for annual ‘Mela Kheer Bhawani’

Tulmulla (Ganderbal), : ¬†Authorities have made all arrangements for annual ‘Mela Kheer Bhawani’, the most important festival of Kashmiri pandits, associated with the Hindu Goddess Ragnya Devi, in Ganderbal while the local Muslims have set up stalls, to provide flowers, milk and other articles for the ‘pooja’.
Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) Security/Law and Order (L&O)/Home guards/Civil Defence Muneer Ahmad Khan on Saturday reviewed security arrangements made for Mela Kheer Bhawani to be celebrated on Monday.
Traffic Police Office, Rural Kashmir, has issued a route plan for vehicles carrying devotees to the shrine at Kheer Bhawani Temple, Tulmulla Ganderbal.
For the second successive year, the state government has announced free transport service for devotees from Delhi to the temple and back to attract more pundits to the mela, to be celebrated on June 10. ”All the arrangements have been made for the annual Mela Kheer Bhawani,” officials said.
It is said that a holy spring in Kheer Bhawani Temple at Tullamula changes its colours from time to time.
It takes on various hues like red, pink, orange, green, blue and has often light green, red rosy and milky white shades. Any shade of black colour is considered to be inauspicious for the inhabitants of the valley, Kashmir pandit priests, looking after the shrine, said.
Thousands of devotees from different parts of the country and within the state visit the shrine on the occasion every year. The number of devotees, which declined after the migration of the Pandit community from here in early 90s due to eruption of militancy, has witnessed manifold increase during the past about a decade. The annual mela provides an opportunity to pandits to reunite with their Muslim brethren separated due to turmoil.
Expecting record number of devotees this time, the government has made all arrangements for their stay and security. A number of top bureaucrats and police officials visited the shrine to review the arrangements for the Mela.
The officials said all arrangements have been put in place for providing every possible facility to the pilgrims coming from the different parts of the Country, including from Jammu, for celebrating the Kheer Bhawani mela scheduled on Monday.
They said that additional water points have been installed, adding that the Engineers of the Power Development Department (PDD) department have been directed to ensure round the clock power supply during the mela days. Thousand of blankets are available for the devotees at Yatri Bhawans and Dormitories in the premises of the Temple. State Road Transport Corporation (SRTC) buses will be available at different migrants camps and migrant concentrated locations at Jammu for carrying the devotees.
Government of Jammu and Kashmir Special Cell for Migrants Resident Commission is facilitating free travel for Kashmiri Pandit community members from Delhi to Tulmulla Ganderbal for the annual Mata Kheer Bhawani festival, they added.
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