Indian devotees take holy dip on spring festival

Basant Panchami' marks the beginning of the spring season in India. The festival glorifies the Hindu goddess of knowledge and wisdom, Saraswati.

Devotees in northern Haridwar and Varanasi cities thronged holy River Ganges bank early in the day, while in eastern Kolkata city prayers were offered on the occasion.

Due to the pandemic, a thinner crowd was seen this year, as compared to the previous years, where tens of thousands of devotees used to gather at the banks to offer prayers and take dips.

Hindu Goddess Saraswati is depicted as seated on a lotus and riding a swan.

'Basant Panchami' holds immense importance for students and artists and special prayers are held in schools and colleges on this day.

Devotees wear yellow clothes on this day and a variety of sweets flavoured with saffron are prepared and donated. Hindus believed Goddess Saraswati was born on this day.