Mela Kheer Bhawani
- Kashmiri Hindus, locally known as Pandits, will celebrate the Zyestha Ashtami at the Mata Kheerbhawani temple at Tulmulla in central Kashmir’s Ganderbal.
About The Temple:
- Dedicated to the goddess Ragnya Devi.
- Location: 30 km from Srinagar city, it is one of the most sacred pilgrimage sites for Kashmiri Hindus.
- The temple gets its name from kheer, or milk and rice pudding.
- It's a local belief that the water of the temple’s spring changes colour from white to red and black in which black symbolises impending disaster.
- Kashmiri Pandits relate it with the militancy of 1990.
About The Festival:
- Every year, a mela or festival is held at the temple.
- The festival, known as Mela Kheerbhawani, is the largest gathering of Hindus in Kashmir after the annual Amarnath Yatra.
- Sevaks at the temple say that over 10,000 pilgrims visited the temple during the festival.
- Hundreds of local Muslims, too, traditionally join the celebrations.
- Pandemic and recent targeted killing of Kashmiri Pandits in the Valley hit the pilgrim’s count.
- Mela Kheer Bhawani
- Location Based Question