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Pictures | Wed Feb 12, 2014 | 6:50pm IST

On the banks of the Ganges

<p>A woman carries sacks of leaves, which will be used to decorate flower bouquets, to be washed on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood</p>

A woman carries sacks of leaves, which will be used to decorate flower bouquets, to be washed on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

A woman carries sacks of leaves, which will be used to decorate flower bouquets, to be washed on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

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<p>A Hindu pilgrim immerses his child at the confluence of the Ganges River and the Bay of Bengal, an act which they consider to be holy, on the occasion of the Makar Sankranti festival at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 14, 2014. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri</p>

A Hindu pilgrim immerses his child at the confluence of the Ganges River and the Bay of Bengal, an act which they consider to be holy, on the occasion of the Makar Sankranti festival at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 14, 2014. REUTERS/Rupak...more

A Hindu pilgrim immerses his child at the confluence of the Ganges River and the Bay of Bengal, an act which they consider to be holy, on the occasion of the Makar Sankranti festival at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 14, 2014. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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<p>A Hindu boy brushes his teeth with a neem twig as others take a dip on the banks of the Ganges river on the holy day of "Mahalaya" in Kolkata October 4, 2013. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri</p>

A Hindu boy brushes his teeth with a neem twig as others take a dip on the banks of the Ganges river on the holy day of "Mahalaya" in Kolkata October 4, 2013. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

A Hindu boy brushes his teeth with a neem twig as others take a dip on the banks of the Ganges river on the holy day of "Mahalaya" in Kolkata October 4, 2013. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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<p>People carry sacks filled with leaves after washing them on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. The leaves will be used to decorate flower bouquets. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood</p>

People carry sacks filled with leaves after washing them on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. The leaves will be used to decorate flower bouquets. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

People carry sacks filled with leaves after washing them on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. The leaves will be used to decorate flower bouquets. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

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<p>A Hindu devotee dries himself after taking a dip in the waters of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014.  REUTERS/Ahmad Masood</p>

A Hindu devotee dries himself after taking a dip in the waters of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

A Hindu devotee dries himself after taking a dip in the waters of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

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<p>A Hindu devotee prepares to leave after getting his head shaved from a barber on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014.  REUTERS/Ahmad Masood</p>

A Hindu devotee prepares to leave after getting his head shaved from a barber on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

A Hindu devotee prepares to leave after getting his head shaved from a barber on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

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<p>A Hindu devotee gets a shave before performing prayers on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014.  REUTERS/Ahmad Masood</p>

A Hindu devotee gets a shave before performing prayers on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

A Hindu devotee gets a shave before performing prayers on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 12, 2014. REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

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<p>A Hindu man holds his daughter to receive blessings from a Naga Sadhu or a Hindu holy man, after taking a holy dip at the confluence of the Ganges River and the Bay of Bengal, on the occasion of the Makar Sankranti festival at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 14, 2014. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri</p>

A Hindu man holds his daughter to receive blessings from a Naga Sadhu or a Hindu holy man, after taking a holy dip at the confluence of the Ganges River and the Bay of Bengal, on the occasion of the Makar Sankranti festival at Sagar Island, south of...more

A Hindu man holds his daughter to receive blessings from a Naga Sadhu or a Hindu holy man, after taking a holy dip at the confluence of the Ganges River and the Bay of Bengal, on the occasion of the Makar Sankranti festival at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 14, 2014. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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<p>Contestants pose beside the bank of the river Ganges after the swimwear round of the beauty contest "Unish Kuri Glam Hunt 2008" in Kolkata September 19, 2008. REUTERS/Jayanta Shaw</p>

Contestants pose beside the bank of the river Ganges after the swimwear round of the beauty contest "Unish Kuri Glam Hunt 2008" in Kolkata September 19, 2008. REUTERS/Jayanta Shaw

Contestants pose beside the bank of the river Ganges after the swimwear round of the beauty contest "Unish Kuri Glam Hunt 2008" in Kolkata September 19, 2008. REUTERS/Jayanta Shaw

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<p>Fishermen prepare a fishing net in the waters of the river Ganges as monsoon clouds cover the sky in Kolkata July 6, 2011.  REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri</p>

Fishermen prepare a fishing net in the waters of the river Ganges as monsoon clouds cover the sky in Kolkata July 6, 2011. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

Fishermen prepare a fishing net in the waters of the river Ganges as monsoon clouds cover the sky in Kolkata July 6, 2011. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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<p>Female Hindu pilgrims take a dip at the confluence of the Ganges River and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, an act that they consider to be holy, south of Kolkata January 13, 2014. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri</p>

Female Hindu pilgrims take a dip at the confluence of the Ganges River and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, an act that they consider to be holy, south of Kolkata January 13, 2014. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

Female Hindu pilgrims take a dip at the confluence of the Ganges River and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, an act that they consider to be holy, south of Kolkata January 13, 2014. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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<p>A wrestler does warm up exercises near a permanent mud wrestling ring at "Sia Ram bhajan samati akhaara", a traditional Indian wrestling training centre, on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 17, 2013. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri</p>

A wrestler does warm up exercises near a permanent mud wrestling ring at "Sia Ram bhajan samati akhaara", a traditional Indian wrestling training centre, on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 17, 2013. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri more

A wrestler does warm up exercises near a permanent mud wrestling ring at "Sia Ram bhajan samati akhaara", a traditional Indian wrestling training centre, on the banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata February 17, 2013. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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<p>A girl pulls a tricycle loaded with religious material for sale on the last day of "Makar Sankranti" festival at the confluence of the river Ganges and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 15, 2013.
 REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri</p>

A girl pulls a tricycle loaded with religious material for sale on the last day of "Makar Sankranti" festival at the confluence of the river Ganges and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 15, 2013. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri more

A girl pulls a tricycle loaded with religious material for sale on the last day of "Makar Sankranti" festival at the confluence of the river Ganges and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 15, 2013. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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<p>An electrician fixes a lamppost as Hindu pilgrims arrive to take holy dip on the last day of "Makar Sankranti" festival at the confluence of the river Ganges and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 15, 2013. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri</p>

An electrician fixes a lamppost as Hindu pilgrims arrive to take holy dip on the last day of "Makar Sankranti" festival at the confluence of the river Ganges and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 15, 2013. REUTERS/Rupak De...more

An electrician fixes a lamppost as Hindu pilgrims arrive to take holy dip on the last day of "Makar Sankranti" festival at the confluence of the river Ganges and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 15, 2013. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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<p>A Sadhu or a Hindu holyman dries his hair after taking a holy dip at the confluence of the river Ganges and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 14, 2012. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri</p>

A Sadhu or a Hindu holyman dries his hair after taking a holy dip at the confluence of the river Ganges and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 14, 2012. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

A Sadhu or a Hindu holyman dries his hair after taking a holy dip at the confluence of the river Ganges and the Bay of Bengal at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata January 14, 2012. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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<p>A tourist boards a boat as rain clouds approach over the river Ganges in Kolkata May 29, 2011. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri</p>

A tourist boards a boat as rain clouds approach over the river Ganges in Kolkata May 29, 2011. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

A tourist boards a boat as rain clouds approach over the river Ganges in Kolkata May 29, 2011. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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<p>A man brushes his teeth against the backdrop of the Howrah Bridge on the banks of river Ganges during early morning in Kolkata October 20, 2010. REUTERS/Reinhard Krause</p>

A man brushes his teeth against the backdrop of the Howrah Bridge on the banks of river Ganges during early morning in Kolkata October 20, 2010. REUTERS/Reinhard Krause

A man brushes his teeth against the backdrop of the Howrah Bridge on the banks of river Ganges during early morning in Kolkata October 20, 2010. REUTERS/Reinhard Krause

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<p>Idols of Hindu god and goddess that were immersed during the Durga Puja festival are pictured on the polluted banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata October 20, 2010. REUTERS/Reinhard Krause</p>

Idols of Hindu god and goddess that were immersed during the Durga Puja festival are pictured on the polluted banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata October 20, 2010. REUTERS/Reinhard Krause

Idols of Hindu god and goddess that were immersed during the Durga Puja festival are pictured on the polluted banks of the river Ganges in Kolkata October 20, 2010. REUTERS/Reinhard Krause

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<p>A boy jumps into the Ganges on a hot summer's day in Kolkata April 24, 2008. REUTERS/Jayanta Shaw</p>

A boy jumps into the Ganges on a hot summer's day in Kolkata April 24, 2008. REUTERS/Jayanta Shaw

A boy jumps into the Ganges on a hot summer's day in Kolkata April 24, 2008. REUTERS/Jayanta Shaw

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