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          Varanasi Pilgrim
The oldest living city in the world, Varanasi is the ultimate destination of all Hindu pilgrims searching for moksha from the cycle of birth and re-birth. It is held sacred for being the home of Lord Shiva and Parvati as also the presence of the mighty river, Ganges that in Varanasi is said to have the power to wash away the sins of mortals. No one knows when Varanasi was found, a city whose status as the foremost place of Hindu pilgrimage cannot be questioned.
 
Located in the modern-day state of Uttar Pradesh, in the Uttaranchal region, its beginnings are lost in the mists of time. However, it is said that Shiva and Parvati were its first citizens. Ganga (the Ganges) the 'River of Life', is said to have acquired the boon to wash away the sins of the human race, when it flowed from the tresses of Lord Shiva. And Varanasi is the place where she turns into the mighty river. Hundreds and thousands of pilgrims flock to this eternal city to expiate their sins.
 
Varanasi derives its present name from the two tributaries of the Ganga - Varuna and Asi - between which it is situated. According to historians, the city was founded around ten centuries before the birth of Christ. The city finds mention in holy scriptures like 'Vamana Purana', Buddhist texts and the 'Mahabharata'.
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