And my obsession with Ramayana continues 🙂
The great river Ganga is a Man made river unlike a natural one, here’s the story , Read on…..
In India, at least, even in this 21st century there are episodes of drought, hunger and death, where people die of hunger due to lack of rains and irrigation facilities. This natural disaster is not new, it has been there since times immemorial. During the reign of king Sagar also episodes of these disasters used to happen off & on and thousands of men, women, children and cattle were victims every time. King decided that the country must have a regular source of irrigation which could provide food even in absence of natural rain. The greatest source of water in Eastern India is the great Himalaya. Hundreds of capable men were sent there to search water. Journey in forest and hills of Himalaya was extremely difficult and dangerous those days. Most of the men could not make their way back home. those who returned reported that there are hundreds of streams on the mountain but to bring them to our land is impossible. King Sagar was already dead while this search was going on. His grandson Anshuman occupied the throne. He and after him his son Dilip tried in this direction but did not succeed.
The natural episodes kept on happening with intervals of few years. When Bhagirath became the king he decided to try again for a permanent source of irrigation because it was the only solution to save the people from this disaster. Some of the workers reported that an extremely large Glacier about 50miles*50miles is hidden between the peaks of Himalayas and a small stream of water is coming out from it. The water was perfectly clear, pure and tasty. King Bhagirath himself went to the Glacier and was extremely delighted to see it. He decided this water must reach my land. This stream disappeared after moving several miles in the mountain. This stream has to be carried down the hill. But the amount of water was not sufficient to be carried to his state. The engineers decided to join several streams flowing down the mountain nearly seven of them to make one river by breaking the path in the mountain, they named this river Bhagirathi and joined it with original Ganga.
Meanwhile a large canal was being digged in the state of Bhagirath to receive the water from Ganga. An outlet for this huge water has to be made and so the canal was connected to river Yamuna in Prayag the present Allahabad and was a huge river to accommodate the water of the canal.
King Janhu appeared in winter when most of the small streams got frozen and water was insufficient to reach the kingdom of Bhagirath. New efforts had to be made to increase the water supplies in the canal. Several years later engineers reported that a large river Alaknanda is flowing in the east which if joined with the Ganga will have sufficient water in the canal for the whole year-winter, summer and rains. It took several years to break the mountains-the hair locks of Lord Shiva-to join Alaknanda with Ganga. This water of “Tripathga”–Ganga, Bhagirathi and Alaknanda was allowed to flow in the canal already prepared to pass through the kingdom of Bhagirath and ultimately joined Yamuna to reach the Bay of Bengal at Ganga Sagar. The Yamuna is named Ganga after Prayag although at Sangam the amount of water in Yamuna is several hundred times more than the amount of water in Ganga, the man made canal, this is just to respect the colossal endeavor and sacrifice of thousands of men in bringing Ganga from Gomukh, the place where it appears from the glacier, to Prayag.
The ancient mythology is very well explained when a look at the wonderful Glacier compels one to call it-Brahma Kamandal, the hilly mountain peaks gives an appearance of hair locks of Lord Shiva and the disappearance of Ganga in winter due to freezing of streams-King Janhu says it.