Rain coupled with hailstorm and squall played spoilsport at the second ‘shahi snan’ (royal bath) of month-long Simhastha-Kumbh Mela in Ujjain on Monday. A large number of devotees were seen scurrying for cover as the weather turned hostile around 3 PM, but no casualty or damage to property was reported.”No casualty or loss to property has been reported,” Ujjain district collector Kavindra Kiyawat said.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We are gathering information. Some places had been hit by the hailstorm,” he added. He said around 30 lakh people had taken the holy dip at Shipra river before the weather became inclement.On May 5, seven persons were killed and around 90 others injured when heavy rains accompanied by lightning and squall flattened and uprooted makeshifts tents of pilgrims in and around the site of the Kumbh Mela.Rainfall continued for several hours at this ancient city where a sea of devotees has converged for a holy dip on a day that coincides with the auspicious ‘Akashya Tritiya’. This morning, the second ‘Shahi Snan’ began with Naga Babas of Juna Akhara venturing into the Shipra river chanting ‘Har Har Mahadev’ and Ramghat had been decked up for the holy dip.Lakhs of devotees have gathered here to take part in the snan from every nook and corner of the country. The bath began with Juna Akhara pontiff Hari Giri offering puja at Ramghat. The Simhastha mela is being held here after a gap of 12 years.This time, transgenders have also set up their akhara in the mela area and took out a procession in the city, which was accorded a grand welcome. Though the transgenders had announced that would take Royal Bath today, they said this has been postponed to May 12 now.

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Simhastha Kumbh Mela: Rain, squall play spoilsport for second ‘shahi-snan’