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Mahashivratri: Ludhianvis pour out devotion in shivlings

Author: Nidhi Singhi & TNN
Publication: The Times of India
Date: February 20, 2012
URL: http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2012-02-20/ludhiana/31078809_1_shiv-temple-temple-tomorrow-shivratri

The Shiv temple in Haibowal has been witnessing a unique activity since February 7. People of all age groups can be seen engrossed in making something with utmost devotion. On prodding further, it's revealed that they all are busy making clay shivlings, and it's not just one, two or even thousands, but over 4 lakh that they have made till now. The number will reach 5 lakh by Monday.

 During religious festivals and occasions, devotion reaches a peak among one and all, and Shivratri, which falls on Monday, is no different. There is a strong belief among the devotees that whoever makes shivling gets relief from his or her problems and receives Lord Shiva's blessings. So, person of every age group is lending a helping hand in building them. Every hand is contributing several hours to make sure that the designated number of shivlings gets completed in time.

If Janak Rani, a homemaker and resident of area, wishes well being of her family, student Shivani Sharma eyes good marks in exams. But majority of the devotees are young girls, sitting in one corner of the temple busy giving shape to clay to form shivlings and secretly or openly wishing a good husband in life.

 There is a strong belief among people that worshipping Lord Shiva helps girls in getting a good life partner. "I come to this temple every morning. When I saw people making shivlings I too pitched in. This time Shivratri is falling on Monday, which is considered very auspicious. My mother had also told me to do so because it would help get me a suitable match," said Kavita Verma, a student.

 Say Rani, "It is very auspicious to make shivlings ahead of Shivratri because our scriptures say that Lord Shiv is the kindest of all Hindu gods and if somebody makes these shivling, he gets his blessings and lead a fulfilled life." Hoping of receiving Lord Shiva's blessings, she has been coming every day to the temple for making shivling.

These shivlings have been kept in the temple and would be immersed in water on Shivratri. There would be grand celebrations in the temple tomorrow as people would start lining up early in the morning to pay obeisance.
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