Hundreds of thousands of Indians gather for holy dip, defying COVID-19 surge

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PRAYAGRAJ, India (Reuters) -Hundreds of thousands of Hindu worshippers gathered on the banks of India’s Ganges river on Friday for a holy bathe despite a 30-fold rise in coronavirus cases in the past month. Hindus believe a bathe in the holy river on the Jan. 14 Makarsankranti festival washes away sins. A large number of devotees were taking a dip in the sacred river where it flows through the eastern state of West Bengal, which is reporting the most number of cases in the country after Maharashtra state in the west. In the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, thousands of devotees, few wearing ma…

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