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River to achieve salvation

About three kilometres from the island town Srirangapatna lies the Pashchimavahini and the surrounding area is a popular pilgrim spot. The name is derived from the town’s west (Pashchima) flowing course of the holy Cauvery.

During the fortnight dedicated to deceased ancestors, Pitrupaksha, (that falls during September-October), Pashchimavahini will be the pilgrims’ preferred destination when rituals like tarpana and pindapradana are performed there on all the days of Pitrupaksha.

Pashchimavahini is believed to be one of the most auspicious river spots to seek moksha for the deceased and also to pay homage to the deceased. People from far-flung places frequent Pashchimavahini to perform the last rites and also to immerse the ashes of the deceased in the river. The ashes of Mahatma Gandhi were also immersed at Pashchimavahini in 1948.

The river banks have many mantapas and bathing ghats built by the Wodeyars. These buildings have lain in dilapidated condition for the past many years though. The district administration, however, is making efforts to save the crumbling structures known for their historic and religious importance. The 13th Finance Commission is said to have provided a grant of Rs one crore to ensure better maintenance of the pilgrim sites and structures of Pashchimavahini.

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