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The Kumbh Mela is the greatest of north Indian festival-fairs and it has exerted a mesmeric influence over the mind and the imagination of the ordinary Indian from time immemorial. It is held once every three years by rotation, on the banks of holy rivers-the Godavari in Nasik, the Shipra in Ujjain, the Ganga in Haridwar and the Sangam in Allahabad. The Purna (complete) Kumbh, the biggest and the most auspicious fair, which falls once every twelve years, is always at Allahabad. When the particular configuration of the Kumbh at Allahabad falls on a Monday, it is called the Somvati Amavasya and the spiritual benefits increase manifold. The Purna Kumbh is followed by the Ardh Kumbh in importance and this fair falls every six years when millions of devout congregate at Allahabad on the banks of the holy river, braving the hazards of cold, disease, hunger and a myriad other privations, to gain spiritual salvation and contentment.