Devotees take a holy dip in the sea and offer special prayers on the auspicious occasion

A sea of visitors thronged the Manginapudi Beach with devotional fervour on Sunday and took a holy dip in the Bay of Bengal to mark the Karthika Pournami and offered special prayers till evening.

Meanwhile, in Vijayawada several devotees poured on to Durga Ghat to take a holy dip in the Krishna on the auspicious occasion. Young and the old took a dip and visited Kanakadurga Temple atop Indrakeeladri.

At various ghats along the Krishna and at Manginapudi there was unprecedented crowd this season. Guarded by professional swimmers and under the watchful eyes of the police, devotees entered sea water. People from across Krishna district started pouring on to the beach before the dawn, turning it into a picturesque place. With lighting of lamps and colourful rituals, the entire stretch of the river in Vijayawada and the sea at Manginapudi was full of activity.

The police had to divert the devotees to two different locations on the beach to manage the unpredicted gathering by the time the sun rises at Manginapudi. With necessary medical and rescue teams providing their services on the beach, the men and women took bath and offered prayers at several temples.

The women, who were observing three-week Kartheekam rushed to the Dutta Ashramam near the beach where they took another holy dip at the ten wells. It is believed that long time ago water was brought from ten rivers in India and mixed in these wells. The police attended to more than a hundred cases of missing children/devotees on the beach. Local fishermen, who are professional swimmers, played a laudable role by controlling the mob and preventing them from venturing deeper into the sea.`

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