The sacred portals of the Kedarnath shrine in the Himalayas will be re-opened at 6:15 AM on April 29, it was announced today.
The propitious hour for the re-opening of the famous temple was announced at the Omkareshwar temple in Ukhimath, where lord Kedarnath (Shiva) is worshipped during the winter as the gates of the Himalayan shrine remain closed because of snow.
Kedarnath chief priest (Rawal) Bhimashankar Ling announced the timing and schedule for the ceremonial re-opening of the temple gates on the occasion of Mahashivratri today, after studying the "Panchanga" (calendar), in the presence of other priests, vedpathis and temple committee officials, its spokesman Harish Gaud said.
In accordance with the traditions, Lord Kedarnath's "Utsav Doli" (a colourful palanquin), borne on the shoulders of devotees, will leave Ukhimath on April 26 and arrive at Kedarnath via Phata village and Gaurikund on the night of April 28, he added.
The doors of the shrine will be thrown open to the devotees at 6:15 AM, on Mesh lagna, on April 29, Gaud said.
Located at a height of around 12,000 feet, the Kedarnath shrine, which attracts lakhs of devotees and tourists from all over the country as well as abroad every year, is closed with the onset of the winter, only to be reopened at the start of the summer in the plains.