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Banaras The Eternal City

Banaras The Eternal City

City of many names, Banaras as it is most commonly called, was officially renamed in 1956 as Varanasi, a name from antiquity. It was first known as Kashi, the city of light, when it was the capital of the kingdom of the same name about 500 BC. For over 2000 years, Banaras the eternal city has been the religious capital of India. Built on the banks of sacred Ganga it is said to combine the virtues of all other places of pilgrimage and anyone who ends their earthly cycle here is said to be transported straight to heaven....

Where Holi is the Talk of the Town

Where Holi is the Talk of the Town

Think of Holi and you think of two places in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh where the festival has a special status. First, the area known as Brajbhoomi comprising Mathura, Vrindavan, Govardhan, Gokul (all connected to Lord Krishna’s birth, childhood and early youth) and Barsana (Radha’s village). Here Holi is a robust enactment of the legends of Radha and Krishna. Then there is the Holi of Banaras. The way it is celebrated is the talk of the town and the famous kavi sammelan or poets’ gathering at Banaras is one reason for this....

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