Video: Foreigners flock to Hindu pilgrim town in Bihar to seek peace for ancestor’s souls
Foreign nationals are slowly getting attracted towards “Pinddan”, a prominent Hindu ritual facilitating final salvation of their ancestors from the recurrent cycle of rebirth.
This year as well a group of six foreigners from Italy, Germany and Russia have arrived in the pilgrim town of Gaya in India’s Bihar state and are performing Hindu rituals with austerity and full respect. The purpose is to let the souls of their ancestors rest in peace.
On the first day on Thursday, the pilgrims walked to the banks of the river Falgu which flows by the side of a prominent Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu and performed rituals as dictated by the priests.
In the next few days, the group of foreign pilgrims will be visiting different locations of religious sites in Gaya and offer oblations.
For peace, not tourism
“I felt a different satisfaction after reaching here,” says Russian national Ulia Vereminko.
She says there are so many people in her country who are hugely impressed with the Indian culture and want to visit the place.
She said she was very much impressed to see the crowd of Hindu pilgrims performing rituals for their ancestors without thinking about their personal troubles.
“This is great,” she adds.
Around a million Hindus visit Gaya every year to perform the particular rites to ensure the souls of their ancestors rest in peace.
‘Mentally relaxed to visit Gaya’
This is not the first time that foreign guests have visited the Hindu pilgrim town Gaya in search of peace. For the past few years, various groups of foreign nationals have been visiting Gaya with the very purpose.
“I was restless after my parents committed suicide quite early in my childhood. Somebody advised me to visit Gaya and offer ‘pinddan’. After performing the rituals under the guidance of priests, now I feel the souls of my parents have attained salvation,” one of such foreign pilgrims Yulia Vladimir had told the media last year.
Pinddan getting popular among foreigners
Last year, 27 foreign tourists from Russia, Spain, Germany, China, Kazakhstan offered ‘Pind daan’ for the salvation of their ancestors.
In 2017, 20 foreign pilgrims had visited Gaya while in 2016, 13 of them visited. A maximum of 50 foreign tourists visited in 2015.
‘Pinddan’ is an annual ritual of Hindus seeking salvation of their ancestors from the recurrent cycle of birth and death.
“Foreign nationals are slowly getting attracted towards the Indian culture. That is lovely,” says a local Hindu priest Hiranath Darhiwala.