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30 Stunning Photos Of The Great Kumbh Mela Festival

The largest religious gathering in the world begins on Jan. 14 in Allahabad, India. The Great Kumbh Mela occurs every 12 years and up to 100 million pilgrims are expected to bathe in the holy waters of the river Ganges during the 55-day event.

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ROBERTO SCHMIDT / Getty Images

A Sadhu, or holy man, walks with his earthly posessions on the vast grounds which will receive the millions of Hindu devotees that will congregate during Jan. and Feb.

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Manish Swarup / AP

Hindu devotees cross a makeshift bridge over the river Ganges as they arrive at Sangam, the confluence of the rivers Ganges, Yamuna and mythical Saraswati.

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ROBERTO SCHMIDT / Getty Images

A boy reacts to other devotees as his family pour water over his head at the waters edge at the Sangam. Worshippers believe a dip in the holy waters cleanses them of their sins.

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