chapter  Chapter 3
44 Pages

Emergence of the Kanwar Pilgrimage

WithRuma Bose

Why is it necessary to write a chapter on history of the Kanwar tirtha? The recent emergence of Kanwariyas in Haridwar, Delhi and Varanasi has led to the perception that the Kanwar Yatra is a new phenomenon, possibly linked to the rise of Hindu nationalistic politics. However, even a preliminary enquiry by Locktefeld (2010) suggested that the Kanwar yatra in Haridwar has its beginnings in an older pilgrimage from Bihar/Jharkhand, which had existed long before the emergence of Hindu nationalism.