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The Yamuna River also well known as Jamuna or Jamna, Yami and Kalindi is one of the most sacred and second longest river in India. Yamunotri glacier of Himalaya, at the height of 6387 mtrs in the state of Uttarakhand is the starting point of Yamuna. The Surya kund or hot water spring named after the Lord Sun near Yamunotri is so hot that people can cook rice and potato by cooking them in cloth bags.

The length of Yamuna River is around 1,376 kilometres and crosses several states including Hariyana, Uttarpradesh, Uttarakhand, Delhi etc and merges with holy Ganga River later on at Triveni Sangam at Allahabad the highly sacred place for Hinduism and Kumbh Mela. The States situated near Yamuna River are highly depended on water of Yamuna. The important tributaries of the Yamuna River are the Tons, the Chambal, the Hindon, the Sarda, the Betwa and the Ken.

Yamuna is believed as a holy river for Hinduism and is highly worshipped as the Devi Yamuna. In Hinduism it is believed when you get yourself bath in Yamuna river you are free from all the sins and you will become Krishna secure (bolte hain saare paap dhul jayenge). For holy dip in sacred river, Ghats are built and have its own importance in India. The Vishram Ghat which is located in Mathura is one of the biggest Ghat on Yamuna among 25 Ghats. Everyday there is a visit of various people for aarti and puja on Vishram Ghat. There are many mesmerizing spots on Yamuna River which are worth visiting. Every day local and foreign tourists arrive to visit Ghats and Yamunotri and the cities around them like Agra and Delhi. The flow of Yamuna behind the Taj Mahal makes it more scenic view (like cherry on a cake).Yamuna starts flowing from Yamunotri glaciers to the states like Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh before meeting Ganga river. The meeting of Ganga and Yamuna River is known as Triveni sangam along with the Sarasvati River which is located in prayagraj (Allahabad) where the Kumbh Mela is held every 12 years.

Goddess Yamuna also known as Yami, is daughter of Surya and his wife Saranyu and sister of Yama, god of death. Yamuna is associated with the Lord Krishna as one of the Ashtabharya thus on the night of Krishna’s birth, it is said he crossed the Yamuna River, which parted to make place for him to cross the turbulent waters. Yamunotri temple of Goddess Yamuna is one of the most prominent shrines in Hinduism and one of sacred place of Chhota Char Dham Yatra circuit or mini Char Dham of Uttarakhand along with Kedaranath, Badrinath and Gangotri.

Another name of Yamuna is Yami the Sanskrit word which means parallel and as stated it flows parallel with River Ganges. It is said that 100 years ago the water of Yamuna River was clear Cristal blue in color than the River Ganga. The Yamuna River is very clean when it emerges out from Uttarkhand to Delhi but after merging with the other rivers the Yamuna gets polluted and the discharge of waste water makes it dirtier. After the population explosion in India, the industrialization developments and various other factors made Yamuna today the most polluting river in India. The pollution starts from wazirabad from where Yamuna enters Delhi. Most of the polluted contaminants comes from Delhi by the disposal waste of factories, household and municipal waste, etc. It is been estimated that 58% disposal waste comes from the capital. Only 33% waste is being treated and other contaminants is getting flowed with the water. The Yamuna River is so much polluted nowadays that it has become a harmful water for drinking purpose. The Delhi water essentials are completed up to 70% from Yamuna by treating the water into less harmful but the days are not far when the capital will have the dirtiest water around India. The Yamuna River can be treated if the sewage treatment is increased or there should be other source for the disposal of industries. As now the dissolved oxygen level is very low in Yamuna River, the aquatic life will be soon disappearing from the river as they will unable to survive there. The government is spending crores of rupees for cleaning and with the support of localities it will be developed soon.

Mythological and Historical Significance
Yamunotri’s status as a revered pilgrimage site is enhanced by its rich mythology and history. The blog post should focus on the following important points:

Relevance in Mythology: Yamunotri is believed to have been the birthplace of the holy Yamuna River, according to Hindu mythology. It is believed that Lord Krishna granted Yamuna, the daughter of the sun god Surya, the ability to flow like a river on Earth. Legend has it that Yamuna is revered as a goddess who can purify sins and bestow blessings on her devotees and is thought to be the sister of Yama, the god of death. The location where the Yamuna River got its start at Yamunotri is thus linked to a number of myths, legends, and practices that have been passed down through the generations.

Authentic Importance: Yamunotri is mentioned in ancient Hindu scriptures and historical records, giving it historical significance. It is accepted that Yamunotri has been a sacrosanct site of journey for a really long time, with references to it tracked down in old texts like the Skanda Purana, Mahabharata, and different other Hindu sacred texts. According to historical records, Yamunotri was also a significant place of worship under the Gurkha king Amar Singh Thapa’s rule in the 19th century. Since ancient times, devotees, sages, and seers have passed through the vicinity of Yamunotri, making it a place of profound spiritual reverence.

Ceremonies and Customs: The pilgrimage site of Yamunotri is renowned for its distinctive rituals and customs. Taking a sacrificial bath in the icy-cold waters of the Yamuna River, which are said to purify the soul and wash away sins, is the primary pilgrimage activity. Pioneers additionally offer supplications at the Yamunotri Sanctuary, which is committed to the goddess Yamuna and accepted to be over 700 years of age. During the pilgrimage season, other rituals include performing pujas (worship ceremonies), tying ribbons or strings around trees for blessings, and participating in various religious ceremonies.

Cultural Relevance: Yamunotri is more than just a place of religious and cultural significance. The pilgrimage to Yamunotri provides a glimpse into India’s extensive cultural heritage, including its religious beliefs and practices. Explorers frequently dress in conventional clothing, convey contributions, and serenade psalms as a feature of their journey insight. The nearby culture and way of life of individuals living nearby Yamunotri additionally give bits of knowledge into the remarkable social texture of the area, with their traditions, customs, and lifestyle interlaced with the otherworldly meaning of Yamunotri.

Location and Access
It’s important to talk about Yamunotri’s location and accessibility in your blog post. Include the following important points:

Geographical Location: Yamunotri is in India’s Uttarkashi district, which is in the northern state of Uttarakhand. It is in the Garhwal Himalayas, at an elevation of approximately 3,293 meters (10,804 feet), surrounded by breathtaking views of snow-capped peaks, thick forests, and rushing rivers. Yamunotri is a popular pilgrimage destination because of its unspoiled beauty.

How to Get to Yamunotri: Yamunotri can be reached by road or by trekking. Uttarkashi, the major town closest, is well-connected by road to other major cities in Uttarakhand and states nearby. Pilgrims must trek approximately 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) to reach Yamunotri from Uttarkashi. Pilgrims will have a thrilling time on the trek, which takes them through picturesque landscapes like thick forests, rushing streams, and rocky terrain. Those who are unable to trek can also rent horses and palanquins.

Access in Season: Yamunotri is only open to pilgrims during a specific pilgrimage season, which, depending on the weather, typically begins in April or May and lasts until October or November. During the winter, the area gets a lot of snow, making it hard to get to and dangerous for pilgrims. Before setting out on your journey, it is essential to schedule your visit to Yamunotri during the pilgrimage season and assess the current weather and road conditions.

Accommodation and Facilities: At Yamunotri, there are only a few options for lodging, including ashrams and guesthouses run by the government and private companies. Pilgrims can get food, a place to sleep, and medical services from these accommodations. However, because of Yamunotri’s remote location, facilities may be basic and limited, so it’s best to be prepared for the pilgrimage’s rough terrain.

Yamunotri Temple
The Yamunotri Sanctuary is a critical strict site situated at Yamunotri, which is the wellspring of the Yamuna Waterway and one of the Burn Dham journey objections in Uttarakhand, India. Include the following essential points in your blog post about the Yamunotri Temple:

Architecture and History: The Yamunotri Temple has significant historical and architectural significance and is thought to be more than 700 years old. It is constructed in the traditional Himalayan style, with stone walls decorated with intricate carvings and a timber-conical roof. Hindus hold the temple, which is dedicated to the goddess Yamuna, in high regard as a place of worship. Surya Kund, a sacred hot water spring believed to have medicinal properties, is part of the temple complex.

Relevance to religion: The Yamunotri Sanctuary is a significant journey site for Hindus, who accept that a visit to Yamunotri can scrub sins, present gifts, and bring favorable luck. Near the temple, pilgrims perform a highly auspicious ritual of bathing in the icy-cold Yamuna River waters. They also pray, hold pujas, or ceremonies of worship, and pray to the goddess Yamuna for health, wealth, and well-being. During the pilgrimage season, the temple is a significant place of faith and devotion for thousands of pilgrims.

Myths and Legends: The significance of the Yamunotri Temple is enhanced by the fact that it is linked to numerous mythological legends. Yamuna is thought to be the sister of Yama, the god of death, and the daughter of the sun god Surya, according to Hindu mythology. The sage Asit Muni is said to have received a blessing to flow on Earth as a river, which is now known as the Yamuna River, because Yamuna was pleased with his penance. The temple is also linked to the story of Lord Krishna, who is said to have swam in the Yamuna River at Yamunotri as part of a ritual to get rid of his sins.

Experience of a Pilgrimage: In addition to being a spiritual and cultural experience, a trip to the Yamunotri Temple is also a religious one. Pilgrims frequently don traditional attire, carry flowers, fruits, and coconuts as offerings, and take part in a variety of rituals and ceremonies. In the midst of the majestic Himalayas, the temple’s serene surroundings create a serene and spiritual atmosphere that lingers with pilgrims. The beauty of the area and the sound of the Yamuna River gushing further enhance the pilgrimage experience.

Occasional Difficulties: The Yamunotri Sanctuary is situated at a high height and encounters outrageous weather patterns, particularly throughout the cold weather months when weighty snowfall makes it blocked off. Depending on the weather, the pilgrimage season lasts only a few months each year, usually from April to November. Due to its remote location, pilgrims must be prepared for the trek’s harsh conditions and the limited facilities at Yamunotri.

Attractions and Activities
In addition to its spiritual significance, the Yamunotri region provides a variety of attractions and activities for pilgrims to enjoy. The following are some important points to include in your blog post about Yamunotri’s attractions and activities:

Trekking: The excursion to the Yamunotri Sanctuary includes a grand journey of around 6 kilometers from the closest roadhead at Janki Chatti. Pilgrims are taken on a picturesque journey that takes them through rushing streams, expansive mountain vistas, dense forests of deodar and pine trees, and more. The experience of trekking is not only physically stimulating, but it also gives you a chance to connect with nature and take in the serene Himalayan beauty.

Hot Springs: The hot springs in the Yamunotri region are well-known for their medicinal properties. Pilgrims can take a sacrificial bath prior to visiting the Yamunotri Temple at the Surya Kund, a natural hot water spring near the temple. Mineral-rich hot water is said to have healing properties for a variety of ailments.

Yamuna River: Hindus consider the Yamuna River, which flows from the Yamunotri glacier, sacred, and as part of their pilgrimage, they frequently take a dip in its icy-cold waters. Additionally, the river is renowned for its unspoiled beauty and provides picnicking, riverside relaxation, and breathtaking mountain views opportunities.

Charan Paduka: Charan Paduka is a rock formation that is close to the Yamunotri Temple. It is believed that the goddess Yamuna left her footprints on it. Charan Paduka is visited by pilgrims as part of their religious rituals and to pay homage to the goddess. In addition, the location is a popular photography spot and provides expansive views of the valley.

Nearby Culture and Food: Visitors to the Yamunotri region can observe the traditional way of life and customs of the locals, who are part of the Garhwali culture. In addition, the region provides an opportunity to savor the regional cuisine, which includes singhori, a sweet dish made with flour and jaggery, rajma (kidney beans), and bhaang ki chutney (hemp seed chutney).

Festivals for Pilgrims: Religious celebrations take place at the Yamunotri Temple, which hosts numerous pilgrimage festivals throughout the year. The Yamunotri Temple opens on Akshaya Tritiya and closes on Diwali. During the pilgrimage season, the temple grounds come to life with a variety of cultural and religious events. Going to these celebrations can furnish guests with an interesting social encounter and understanding into the neighborhood customs.

Pilgrimage Experience
The Yamunotri pilgrimage is a one-of-a-kind and spiritually enriching journey that allows devotees to connect with the divine and immerse themselves in the sacred Himalayan atmosphere. The following are some important points to include in your blog post about the Yamunotri pilgrimage experience:

Spiritual Happiness: Hindus consider the journey to Yamunotri, where the goddess Yamuna is believed to have resided, to be a sacred one. Devotees make the strenuous journey to the Yamunotri Temple with a great deal of respect, praying and engaging in rituals along the way. Devotees can seek blessings, pray, and experience spiritual bliss in the tranquil surroundings of the temple, which is situated amidst the majestic Himalayas.

Physical Obstacles: From Janki Chatti, the closest roadhead, the pilgrimage to Yamunotri involves a challenging six-kilometer trek with steep uphill sections and rough terrain. Pilgrims must be physically ready for the trek, which requires proper acclimatization to the high altitude and endurance. The excursion can be genuinely requesting, however it is likewise a trial of one’s assurance and dedication.

Climate and weather: Yamunotri’s weather can be unpredictable, with significant temperature drops, especially in the winter. Due to the region’s frequent rainfall, pilgrims must be prepared for the cold and bring warm clothing as well as rain gear. The pilgrimage can be made more difficult by the weather, but it also gives you a chance to see the Himalayan landscape in its raw beauty.

Social Inundation: The journey to Yamunotri offers pioneers an opportunity to drench themselves in the neighborhood culture and customs of the Garhwal locale. Pilgrims have the opportunity to interact with the locals, gain an understanding of their traditions, and gain a glimpse of their way of life. The locals are renowned for their warm hospitality and welcoming nature. Pilgrims can be humbled by the locals’ rustic and simple way of life and gain insight into their culture and heritage.

Spiritual Exercises: Various devotional practices are part of the Yamunotri pilgrimage, including taking a ritualistic bath in the hot springs, praying at the temple, and carrying out religious rituals. Additionally, pilgrims take part in aarti, a lamp-lit religious ceremony, and ask the temple priests for blessings. Pilgrims are able to connect with their inner selves and experience a sense of peace and tranquility thanks to the devotional practices, which create a sense of reverence and spirituality.

Revitalization and inner reflection: In addition to being a physical journey, the Yamunotri pilgrimage is also an opportunity for inner renewal and reflection. Away from the chaos of modern life, the tranquil and unspoiled Himalayan environment is ideal for contemplation, meditation, and self-reflection. During their pilgrimage, pilgrims frequently experience inner peace, clarity, and renewal, which can have a long-lasting impact on their spiritual journey and personal development.

Practical Information
It is essential to have useful information when making a pilgrimage to Yamunotri in order to ensure a safe and easy journey. Include the following important and useful information in your blog post:

The Best Time to Go: Yamunotri is usually only accessible from May to November because the region gets a lot of snow in the winter, making it hard to walk there and see the temple. When the weather is nice and the trekking routes are open, the summer months of May through June and the early autumn months of September through November are the best times to visit.

Route and difficulty of the hike: From Janki Chatti, the closest roadhead, there is a six-kilometer trek to Yamunotri for the pilgrimage. The trek has steep uphill sections and uneven terrain, making it moderately challenging. The physical challenges of the trek, which may necessitate stamina, endurance, and proper acclimatization to the high altitude, should be anticipated by pilgrims.

Fees for entry and permits: To visit the Yamunotri Temple, pilgrims must obtain a permit from the temple’s authorities, which can be obtained at Janki Chatti. In addition, there is a fee to enter the temple, which may differ for Indian and foreign visitors. Because pilgrims need to be aware of the necessary documentation and fees before embarking on their pilgrimage, it is essential to include information about the permits and entry fee in your blog post.

Food and Accommodation: There are restricted convenience choices accessible at Yamunotri, including visitor houses and dharamshalas (pioneer rest houses) worked by the sanctuary specialists and confidential merchants. Because the availability of lodging may be limited during the peak pilgrimage season, it is recommended that you make reservations in advance. Simple vegetarian meals are available at the guesthouses and local eateries in Yamunotri’s basic food options.

Wellbeing and Security: When making the pilgrimage to Yamunotri, pilgrims should be aware of the health and safety precautions that need to be taken. The rough terrain and high altitude can increase the likelihood of altitude sickness, injuries, and other health problems. Pilgrims should be physically fit, properly acclimate, and bring the medicines and first aid kits they need. In addition, it is essential to adhere to safety guidelines, trek along predetermined routes, and follow the recommendations of local authorities and guides.

Transportation and Network: Dehradun is the major town closest to Yamunotri and is well-connected by road, rail, and air. Pilgrims can take taxis or public transportation from Dehradun to Janki Chatti, the starting point for the Yamunotri trek. To assist pilgrims in planning their travel logistics, it is essential to include information in your blog post about transportation options, connectivity, and distances from major cities.

In conclusion, Yamunotri is a sacred pilgrimage site in the Indian state of Uttarakhand that is well-known for its spiritual aura, natural beauty, mythological and historical significance, and significance. Along with the hot springs and picturesque surroundings, the main draw is the Yamunotri Temple, which is dedicated to the goddess Yamuna. The pilgrimage to Yamunotri is a cherished experience for devotees and nature enthusiasts alike because it offers a singular combination of spirituality, adventure, and natural beauty.

It is essential to carefully plan your pilgrimage to Yamunotri, taking into account things like the best time to visit, the difficulty of the trekking route, permits and entry fees, lodging and food options, health and safety measures, and transportation and connectivity. A successful pilgrimage will be made possible by being well-prepared with all of the necessary information.

Yamunotri is more than just a religious destination; it is also a chance to connect with nature, take in the tranquility of the surroundings, and learn about the region’s cultural heritage. It is a place where one can find solace, rejuvenate the mind and spirit, and embark on an enriching and enlightening spiritual journey.

Thus, on the off chance that you are looking for a heavenly involvement with the lap of the Himalayas, Yamunotri could be the ideal journey objective for you. Prepare for a soul-stirring journey to Yamunotri, where spirituality and nature combine to create an experience that will last a lifetime, by planning your trip in advance.

In Hindu mythology, what significance does Yamunotri hold?
Because it is believed to be the source of the Yamuna River, which is regarded as a sacred river in Hinduism, Yamunotri has a significant place in Hindu mythology. Yamuna is the sister of Yama, the god of death, and the daughter of the Sun God, according to Hindu mythology. Praying at the Yamunotri Temple and taking a dip in the holy Yamuna River is said to purify one of sins and bring blessings.

How do I reach Yamunotri?
Yamunotri is in India’s Uttarakhand’s Uttarkashi district. Dehradun, the major town closest, is well-connected by road, rail, and air. Janki Chatti, the starting point for the Yamunotri trek, can be reached from Dehradun by taxi or public transportation. The hike from Janki Chatti to Yamunotri is about 6 kilometers long and moderately challenging.

What is the best time to visit Yamunotri?
Because of the heavy snowfall during the winter, Yamunotri is generally only accessible from May to November. The summer months of May to June and the early autumn months of September to November, when the weather is pleasant and the trekking routes are open, are the best times to visit Yamunotri. Due to the possibility of flooding and landslides, it is best to stay away from the monsoon season (July through August).

At Yamunotri, which accommodations are available?
Guest houses and dharamshalas—pilgrim rest houses—operated by the temple authorities and private vendors make up the limited lodging options available in Yamunotri. Because the availability of lodging may be limited during the peak pilgrimage season, it is recommended that you make reservations in advance. The convenience choices are fundamental, with basic veggie lover feasts accessible at the visitor houses and neighborhood restaurants.

When visiting Yamunotri, what health and safety precautions should be taken?
The trek to Yamunotri, which is located at a high altitude, necessitates the necessary health and safety measures. Travelers ought to be in great shape, adapt appropriately, and convey essential prescriptions and emergency treatment packs. During the trek, it is essential to drink a lot of water and take breaks because altitude sickness can be a risk. For a safe pilgrimage, it’s important to follow the designated trekking routes, listen to local authorities and guides, and be aware of the weather.



In the continuation of my last post “Scenic Spots on the way to Divine Yatra YAMNOTRI”. Next day morning we got up at 5 AM to get ready for the trekking of Yamnotri which is about 6 Km. from Jannki Chatti. It was still raining since last night so we were in the dilemma to go or not as our kids were also there with us. We decided to get ready and if rain stops we all would go other wise my Brother-in-law& I will leave. As it was quite difficult to go till Yamnotri temple when it was raining. By the time we got ready around 6 AM, my sister came to our room & informed that it stopped raining. We all felt happy as we were thinking that reaching so close to our destination we all won’t be able to have the Darshan of Maa Yamnotri but by Maa’s grace our wish was fulfilled & we all proceeded towards Yamnotri at 6.30 AM.

Introduction of River Yamuna

River Yamuna with a total length of around 1,370 kilometers, is the largest tributary of the Ganges in northern India. Yamuna is considered the most sacred among all the rivers as per Hindu mythology. It flows through the states of Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh, before merging with the Ganges at Allahabad. The cities of Delhi, Mathura and Agra lie on its banks.

The history says that, Yamuna is the consort of Lord Shri Krishna. Gokula, the divine abode of the Lord is the home of Yamuna. It is that, the river first went round Shri Krishna before descending down to earth as per the order of her Lord. River Yamuna came to be called as “Kalindi”as it touched the peak of Kalind. Then it descended down the hills and reached the plains at Khandav Vana which has been developed as Delhi city now.

YAMNOTRI is located at Uttarkashi district of Uttrakhand at a height of 3293 meters above sea level on the western range of Banderpunch Mountain surrounded by Himalayan which gives scenic view. On the way you will find river Yamuna & the falls. It is one of the holiest pilgrimages of Chardahm yatra. The temple is dedicated to river Yamuna.

According to the legends, it is the daughter of the Sun God, Surya and the sister of Yama, the God of Death. The Goddess is believed to have come down from the heavens to sanctify the world. According to ancient beliefs it is said that those who take a dip in the holy waters of the river do not fear death.Yamuna is most revered river in India after Ganga. The best time to visit this place is during May to September . During winters the whole place is covered under the snow that time Yamuna is worshiped in Village kharsali. The priests of yamnotri comes from the same village Kharsali which is about 1 Km from jannki chatti. They are the administrators of the sacred place and perform religious rites.

According to the legend ancient sage Asit Muni had his hermitage here. All his life, he bathed daily both in Ganga and Yamuna. Unable to go to Gangotri during his old age, a stream of Ganga appeared opposite Yamunotri for him.

The temple and the place opens every year on the auspicious day of the Akshaya Tritya, which generally falls during the last week of April, or the first week of May. The temple always closes on the sacred day of Diwali in mid October – 1st week of November, with a brief ceremony. The temple staff return to their villages and for the rest of the time the valley is gripped in no man silence and covered with white sheet of snow. With melting of snow next summer, temple re-opens to blissful happiness of thousands of visitors again.

There seems to be a confusion as to who built the temple of Yamunotri. However according to sources, the temple was originally constructed by King of Tehri , Pratap Shah in 1919. Some says the original temple was built by the Maharani Gularia of Jaipur in last decade of 19th century. The Yamuna like Ganga has been elevated to the status of divine mother for the Hindus and has been held responsible for nurturing and developing the Indian civilization.

The path are narrow and due care is necessary while treading on these paths especially while passing past to the moving ponies and dandies. The trek from Janki chatti to Yamunotri is steep. Though only six kilometer, is very strenuous. The natural beauty pays the dividends. Gradually large glaciers become apparent. Here from Bandarpoonch peak Yamuna comes out.

Worth to see the following places

Yamnotri Temple : The Main Temple is dedicated to Goddess Yamuna , who is represented by a black marble idol.

Divya Shila : Out side the main temple near Surya Kund there is a shila called Divya Shila, which is worshiped before Puja is offered to Goddess Yamuna.

Surya Kund There are five kunds (thermal springs) known as SURYA KUND , TAPTH KUND , JAMUNA KUND, VISHNU KUND & BHRAM KUND.

Surya Kund is is the most important kund , Devotees prepare rice and potatoes to offer at the shrine by dipping them in Surya Kund , tied in muslin cloth. Rice so cooked is taken back home as Prasad.

Sapthrishi kund : The actual source of Yamuna , Saptrishi Kund lies above 10 kms ahead at an altitude of about 4221 meters above the sea leavel. The approach is extremely difficult hence pilgrims offer puja at the temple itself. Saptrishi kund is known for the rare Brahma Lotus.

After Darshan we reached Jannki Chatti & started our journey for Gangotri.

Next post “Scenic spots on the way to Divine Yatra Gangotri” will be in next couple of days.

kahin dhoop Kahin Chaya yeh hai prabhu ki maya



Yamuna In Hinduism – Yamuna In Hindu Mythology

Yamuna in Hindu Mythology. Yamuna is a sacred river in Hinduism and the main tributary of the Goddess Ganga. The river is worshipped as a Hindu goddess called Yamuna.

In the Vedas, Yamuna is also known as Yami and Kalindi. She is also associated with the god Krishna as one of Ashtabharya. Just like Goddess Ganga, bathing in or drinking Yamuna’s waters is believed to remove sin.

Yamuna is described as the daughter of the sun god Surya (though some say that she was the daughter of Brahma) and his wife Saranyu (Sanjna in later literature), the goddess of the clouds, and the twin sister of Yama, the god of death. Her other brothers include Vaivasvata Manu, the first man and the twin Ashvins, divine doctors. and the planet Saturn (Shani). She is described as Surya’s favourite child. As the daughter of Surya, she is also called as Suryatanaya, Suryaja and Ravinandini.

The Agni Purana describes Yamuna’s iconography. She is depicted as black in complexion and stands on her mount, the tortoise, holding a water pot in her hand. In an ancient painting she is shown as a beautiful maiden standing on the banks of the river.

As a companion of Yama, Yamuna is often called Yami in the Vedas. Yami probably originates the Sanskrit word meaning twins of both sexes. In later literature, she is known as Yamuna and Kalindi (“the dark one”).

The Birth of Yamuna
A tale explains her name Yamuna: Sanjna (Sun God Surya’s wife) was unable to bear her husband, the sun’s heat and light and closed her eyes in his presence. Surya felt insulted and said that their son will be known as Yama (“restraint”), due to the restraint she showed. Thereafter, Sanjna tried her best to keep her eyes open, however she flickered them angering Surya again who proclaimed that her daughter would be Yamuna. Since Sanjna had tried to keep the eyes open, Yamuna was blessed that she would worshipped as a goddess and remembered throughout time

The Vamana Purana narrates the tale how the originally clear waters turned black. Distraught by the death of his wife Sati, Shiva wandered the whole universe. The god of love Kamadeva shot Shiva with the arrow Unmadastra, that made Shiva restless and excited. Ever thinking of Sati, an excited Shiva jumped into Yamuna to overcome the sexual urge in his mad frenzy, turning her waters into black by his sorrow and unfulfilled desire.

Another legend describes that Krishna defeated and banished the serpent Kaliya in the Yamuna. While the dark serpent entered the waters, the river became dark.

According to Bhagavata Purana Lord Krishna and Kalindi had ten sons: Shruta, Kavi, Vrsa, Vira, Subahu, Bhadra, Santi, Darsa, Purnamasa and the youngest, Somaka.

The Mahabharata mentions Yamuna being one of the 7 tributaries of the Ganges. Drinking its waters is described to absolve sin.

It is narrated that Yami was the first woman, along with her twin brother, Yama in Vedic beliefs. Yama and Yami are a divine pair of creator deities. While Yama is depicted as the Lord of Death, Yami is said to be the Lady of Life. Yami also addresses a hymn to Yama in the Rig Veda, describing various drinks offered to dying sacrificers in the after-life.


यमुना, yamunā

Yamuna is a sacred river in Hinduism, second only to the Ganges in holiness, and is its main tributary. Like Ganges and Sarasvati, the river is worshiped as the goddess of the same name. In Vedas, Yamuna is known as Yami, in later literature as Kalindi. It is believed that bathing in Yamuna or drinking its water washes away all sins.

In Puranic literature, Yamuna is described as the daughter of the God Surya and his consort, Sanjna (Saranya), the Goddess of the clouds, and the twin sister of the Death God Yama. Her other brothers are Vaivasvata Manu (the predecessor of humanity), the Ashvina twins (Gods of medicine), and the planet Shani. Yamuna was Surya’s favorite child.

The legend explains the origin of the name Yamuna. To endure her husband’s dazzling radiance, Sanjna had to cover her eyes in his presence. Offended by this, Surya called his son Yama (samyama – restraint). Sanjna did her best to keep her eyes open, but she still couldn’t help blinking. Then Surya named his daughter Yamuna.

Also with the name “Yamuna” is associated the meaning of the word “yama” – a twin, a pair (on the one hand, the twin sister of Yama, on the other – the river flows parallel to the Ganges, being her pair).

Ямуна 2.jpg
Yamuna is usually depicted as a beautiful girl with a jug, her vahana is a turtle, a symbol of creation. Yami and her twin brother Yama are a pair of deities-creators. While Yama is the god of death, Yami is the goddess of life.

Legend of the origin of the night
RigVeda says that the twins Yama and Yami loved each other very much. They lived carefree on Earth, where the day lasted forever, spending time at their pleasure. Once Yami returned home and found Yama under a tree motionless. Not wanting to disturb his sleep, Yami waited a long time for him to wake up, but Yama did not wake up. In the end, Yami tried to wake her brother up, but in vain. Yami cried so hard that she risked flooding the entire Earth with her tears. The gods came to calm her down, but all she could utter was: “Yama died today …”.

Cataclysms spread on Earth from Yami’s suffering, and gradually Gods realized that her suffering would not dry out, because Yami did not move in time – she was always in “today”. Then the Gods and Goddesses together created the sunset. A soothing coolness set in, and Yami’s sobs subsided. When the Sun rose again the next morning, Yami whispered, “Yama died … yesterday.”

Over time, the pain of loss subsided. The Earth was saved to always give hope for a better tomorrow, and Yami now flows across the Earth as the divine river Yamuna.

Yamuna and Krishna in Puranas
ЯМУНА.jpgIn sources related to Krishna, the Goddess is mainly referred to as Kalindi. In the myth of the birth of Krishna, Yamuna parted at the request of Krishna’s father Vasudeva to allow him to safely carry the baby to the other side.

Krishna spent most of the days of his youth in Vrindavan on the banks of Yamuna, playing the flute with his friend Radha and the cowherd boys of the gopis.

Once, during the youth of Krishna, the waters of Yamuna became poisonous due to the huge five-headed snake Kalya that settled in it, and all living things in the area died. In the fight against the snake, Krishna performed his dance on its five heads, each step of which was fatal for the snake. Kalya begged for mercy, and Krishna asked the snake to live in the deepest place of the ocean, where it would not harm anyone. Kalya agreed and crawled away, the rays of the Sun warmed the water, and it became crystal clear again.

Bhagavata Purana describes the meeting of an adult Krishna with Kalindi while hunting in the woods together with Arjuna. At the request of Krishna, Arjuna asked the girl who she was, to which she replied that she was the daughter of God of Sun Kalindi and that she was waiting here in austerity for her named Vishnu. As an avatar of Vishnu, Krishna marries Kalindi, who later gave him ten sons.

Interesting Facts
The river is also called Yumna, Yamna, Jamuna, Jamna.
Yamuna has a length of 1376 km, begins at the Yamunotri glacier, flows through the territory of the states of Haryana and Uttar Pradesh and at Allahabad (Prayaga) flows into the Ganges.
The confluence of Yamuna, Ganges, and the mythical Sarasvati River – Triveni Sangam – is the greatest pilgrimage site.
In yogic texts, Yamuna is associated with the Pingala channel, Ganges with Ida, and Sarasvati with Sushumna. The confluence of these three channels (three rivers) in the subtle body is also called Triveni.
Now Yamuna is one of the most polluted rivers in the world, especially in the suburbs of New Delhi.
Of the famous cities, except for the capital of India, Agra, Mathura, Vrindavan are located on the banks of Yamuna. In Mathura and Vrindavan they celebrate Yamuna-jayanti – the day the river descends to Earth (the 6th lunar day of the light half of the month of Chaitra).




(Other names: Jamuna, Yami, Jamna, Jumna)

YamRaj, the deity of death, had a sister named Yami. Yami’s mother was Sanghya (daughter of Vishwakarma) and father was Lord Surya (Sun). According to the ancient stories, Sangna could not bear the lustre of SuryaDev (Sun god) and so she closed her eyes.

At this, Suryadev got angry and cursed her due to which Sanghya’s son Yama become the deity of death. Sanghya, tried to please her husband Suryadev by looking captivating, but this form did not attract Suryadev, and he cursed her again that she will have a daughter named Yami who will be very fickle and because of this fickle nature she will not get a place in heaven.

She will flow with fickleness on the earth as a river named Yamuna. Since then, Yamuna is flowing as a river. Yamuna is also known as Krishna and Kalindi.

In spite of flowing as a mere river on the earth because Yamuna was born into a family of Devas (deities), a holy faith and glory is united with her.

The history says that, Yamuna is the consort of Lord Shri Krishna. Gokul, the divine abode of the Lord is the home of Yamuna. It is that, the river first went round Shri Krishna before descending down to earth as per the order of her Lord.

In the Dwapar age (there are four Yugas according to Hindu mythology- Satyuga, Treta Yuga, Dwapar Yuga and Kali Yuga) Lord Krishna’s childhood was spent at Gokul on the banks of the River Yamuna. It was Yamuna’s good fortune that she could hear the sound of flute loved by all ears played by Shri Krishna.

Yamuna river’s image
River Yamuna came to be called as “Kalindi” as she touched the peak of Kalind. Then she descended down the hills and reached the plains at Khandav Van which has been developed as Delhi city now.

Yamuna had longed to see almighty Lord Krishna as her husband. Hence taking the guise of an extremely pretty woman, she began severe penance in Khandav Van.

Lord Surya, Yamuna’s father, built an under water palace there for her to tale rest. It is believed that she still resides there.

Simply by bathing in the Yamuna, the devotees attain the association of Lord Krishna. A person who bathes there attains the result of visiting all holy places.

It is very sad to know that the holy river Yamuna is one of the most polluted rivers in the world, especially around New Delhi, the capital of India, which dumps about 57% of its waste into the river. Though numerous attempts have been made to clean it, the efforts have proven to be futile


11 Interesting facts about Yamunotri temple

Yamunotri is one of the most popular religious destinations in India. Located in the Garhwal Himalayan ranges of Uttarakhand state, it is considered sacred because of the presence of the river Yamuna. Considered the main seat of Goddess Yamuna, the pilgrimage is famous as the origin place of the river Yamuna.


It is the important Dham under Char Dham Circuit from where the yatra for Chardham begins. At an elevation of 6,387 meters, Yamunotri lies on the southwestern slopes of Banderpooch peaks. Yamunotri Glacier is the source of the Yamuna river, situated in the Mussourie range of the lower Himalayas.


1.Relevance of the Yamuna in Hinduism

The Yamuna is considered the most sacred river in Hinduism after River Ganges. People following Hinduism worship the goddess Yamuna as the main tributary of the River Ganga. She is referred to as Yami in early texts and is often referred to as Kalindi in the early books of Hinduism.


According to Legends, Yamuna is the daughter of Surya – the sun god and cloud goddess – Sanjna. She is also referred to as the twin sister of the death of god – Yama. The Yamuna played a vital role in the early years of Lord Krishna (an avatar of Lord Vishnu). She is referred to as one of the consorts of the deity Krishna.


2. Birth of Yamuna’s Brother – Yama

According to Hindu mythology, The Sanjna (mother of Yamuna, cloud goddess) closed her eyes as she could not bear the light and heat of her husband – Surya (the sun god). Annoyed Sun with his wife’s behavior, he felt insulted and told their son to be known as Yama (‘restraint’), referring to the resistance that her wife showed.


3.Incarnation Of Goddess Yamuna

After that, Sanjna opened her eyes, but the excessive light and heat from Surya made her eyes flicker, annoying Lord Surya again. But Sanjna tried open her eyes, she was blessed with the Yamuna, and the Yamuna received the title of the goddess to be worshipped by humanity throughout time.

4.Winter Residence of Goddess Yamuna

Kharsali Village is an important place to consider while your visit to Yamunotri. It also hosts helicopter services for Yamunotri. If you are availing of Yamunotri Dham yatra By Helicopter, you will board the chopper at Shahastradhara at Dehradun helipad and proceed to Kharsali in Yamunotri Helipad.


Just 2 km away from Janki Chatti, Kharsali is not only known for its incredible views but also serves as a Home to the idol of Goddess Yamuna for the six months of Winter. When the Yamunotri temple closes for 6 months starting from Bhai Dooj, the idol of Goddess Yamuna is shrined in the Sameshwar temple in the village of Kharsali. People of Kharsali worship the goddess throughout the winter.

5.The associated darkness of Yamuna

Another tale suggests that the Yamuna derived her name as Kalindi due to her association with the Lord of Death, Yama, who is associated with darkness as Kala. The Vamana Purana suggests Shiva wandered the whole universe as he was distraught by the death of her wife, Parvati. To overcome his sorrow, he jumped into the river Yamuna turning its water black due to his sorrow.


Another epic suggests how Krishna defeated the serpent Kaliya in the Yamuna, and the rivers became dark.



6.Bhai Dooj and the Yamuna

According to Skanda Purana, Yamuna pleased her brother Yama (God of death) by fasting on the Kartik Shukla Dwitiya. the day is also known as ‘Yama Dwitiya’ and later celebrated as festival of ‘Bhai Dooj’.

7.Yamunotri Priest

The householders Brahmin of Uniyal cast is appointed as priests of Yamunotri. In 1855, when the King of Garhwal Sudharshan Shah rebuilt the Yamunotri temple, he appointed his ancestor priest Maluram Poluram to worship the Goddess. Before the formation of the temple, the idol was shrined in the cave.

8.An integral part of Chota Char Dham

Yamunotri is referred to as an integral part of Chota Char Dham. The Yatra begins from Yamunotri and then proceeds to Gangotri, followed by Kedarnath and Badrinath. Like the rest of the three Dhams, Yamunotri also closes for 6 months in winter owing to harsh climatic conditions. Due to heavy rainfall, the Yamunotri Dham becomes inaccessible.

9.Another tale about Asit Rishi

According to the Legends, Asit Rishi has visited the Yamuna regularly to pay tribute since its origin. In his old age, when he became incapacitated to visit the Yamuna anymore, Yamuna changed her course of flow and routed it near his Ashram.


He bestowed the river Gange and built a temple to worship the goddess. This temple is presently referred to as Yamunotri Temple and is incredibly popular as the main pilgrimage of Char Dham.

10. History of Yamunotri Temple

According to historical observations, the first temple was built by Maharaja Sudarshan Shah (1815- 1859). At that time, wood was the prime material used to build this temple, and the idol of goddess Yamuna was shrined. Later the Maharaja Pratopshah rebuilt the temple in 1871 using stones. According to historical evidence, the temple was demolished twice in the 19th century. Maharani Guleria of Jaipur initiated the present construction of the temple.

11.Surya Kund – A Hot spring

Surya Kund is a popular hot spring near Yamunotri temple where the water temperature is believed to be around 90 degrees Celsius. Devotees coming for the Darshan cook rice and boil potatoes in the kund water to be taken as the prasadam of Goddess Yamuna.


For ages, Yamuna river has been revered as the goddess and popular among devotees for its incredible trek. Perched at the height of 2650 above sea levelJanki Chatti is another interesting place, neat Yamunotri, known for its hot springs. From beautiful waterfalls to nature’s scenic beauty, Janki Chatti forms an integral part of the Yamunotri pilgrimage.


Goddess Kalindi
Kalindi or the Goddess Yamuna is the Hindu Goddess of the river Yamuna. A dip in her holy waters annihilates fear of death.
Kalindi is also known as the Goddess Yamuna. Goddess Ganga and Yamuna are said to be twins; their rivers running parallel. Goddess Yamuna is mentioned in the Rig Veda, the Atharva Veda and Brahmanas. It is said that she came down from the heavens to sanctify Mother Earth. From the heavens she rested on Kalinda Mountain in the Himalayas, hence she is also known as ‘Kalindi’. A dip in her holy waters annihilates fear of death.

Iconography of Goddess Kalindi
The lotus flowers that grow in her waters are the eyes with which Kalindi or Yamuna gazes at Lord Krishna. Her vortexes are the ears with which she hears about Krishna. Kalindi’s fish are the nose with which she smells the fragrance of Lord Krishna. Her waves are the arms with which she embraces Krishna. Again Kalindi’s swans and cranes are the mouth with which she glorifies the Lord. Her waters are the servant with which she worships Lord Krishna.

Legend of Goddess Kalindi
According to legend, Yamuna was a great favourite of her father Lord Surya. After the children, Yama and Yamuna were born, Sanjna left her sister Chaaya in her place pretending to be her, and returned to her parents’ home, as she could not bear the Sun’s intense brightness. Once, Chaaya was not very compassionate towards Sanjna’s children. Yama, unable to tolerate Chaaya’s cruelty any longer, stamped her foot hard. Enraged by this, Chaaya cursed Yama that he would lose his foot. Yamuna his beloved sister could not bear this injustice. She came to Earth and prayed for the curse to be revoked. Yamuna was devastated and she kept weeping. It is said her tears became the River Yamuna. It is believed that anyone dipping in the Yamuna is spared a painful death.

In memory of this profound love between brother and sister, “Bhai Dooj” is celebrated in various parts of the country. Sisters pray for their brothers to have a long life and brothers vow to look after and protect their sisters.

Kalindi and Lord Krishna
River Yamuna is next only to the River Ganga in her sacredness. According to the legends, Vasudeva was crossing the Yamuna while carrying baby Krishna. He was seeking a safe place at Gokul on the other bank from Mathura. It was then that Krishna fell into the river. The dust of his lotus feet is said to have sanctified Yamuna. Since this blissful touch of the Lord’s feet, Yamuna claims to be holier than the Ganges River.

Who is Yamuna, The Hindu Goddess?
Introduction: Yamuna is a revered goddess in Hindu mythology, worshipped as the personification of the sacred Yamuna River. With a rich history and deep-rooted significance, she holds a prominent place in Hindu culture and religious traditions. This essay aims to provide an in-depth exploration of Yamuna’s origins, mythology, symbolism, religious significance, and worship, shedding light on her role as a goddess in Hinduism.


I. The Origin and Genealogy of Yamuna:
Yamuna’s origin can be traced back to ancient Hindu texts and mythological narratives. According to one prevalent legend, she is believed to be the daughter of Surya, the sun god, and his consort Sanjna. Sanjna, unable to bear the intense radiance of her husband, created Chhaya, her lookalike, to fulfill her marital duties. However, Chhaya mistreated Sanjna’s children, including Yamuna and her twin brother Yama, the god of death. Upon discovering this, Sanjna returned and cursed Chhaya, giving Yamuna her distinct dark complexion. This mythological tale lays the foundation for Yamuna’s association with the Yamuna River and her significance as a goddess.


II. Yamuna in Hindu Mythology:
A. Association with Lord Krishna: Yamuna’s deep connection with Lord Krishna, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, is of paramount importance. Lord Krishna spent his childhood in Vrindavan, a town situated on the banks of the Yamuna River. The Yamuna River became the backdrop for Krishna’s divine leelas (pastimes), most notably the Raslila, a joyous dance performed by Krishna and his gopis (cowherd companions). The Raslila symbolizes the eternal love and devotion between the individual soul (jivatma) and the Supreme Soul (Paramatma). Yamuna’s association with this divine episode elevates her status as a goddess and enhances the sanctity of the Yamuna River.

B. Other Mythological References: Yamuna’s presence can be found in various Hindu scriptures and epics. She is mentioned in the Rigveda, one of the oldest Hindu texts, where the river is revered for its life-giving properties. The Puranas, such as the Bhagavata Purana and the Vishnu Purana, contain numerous stories that highlight Yamuna’s significance. She is also mentioned in the Mahabharata, particularly in Krishna’s interactions with her during his time in Vrindavan.


III. Symbolism and Attributes of Yamuna:
A. Personification of the Yamuna River: Yamuna is considered the physical embodiment of the sacred Yamuna River. The river’s purity, life-giving nature, and nourishing properties are reflected in Yamuna’s attributes. She is often depicted holding a water pot or a lotus, symbolizing her association with the river and its life-sustaining qualities.

B. Dark Complexion: Yamuna’s dark complexion, bestowed upon her due to her mother Sanjna’s curse, has symbolic significance. It represents the transformative power of the river, capable of purifying and absorbing impurities. Yamuna’s dark complexion also emphasizes her role as a goddess associated with fertility, growth, and abundance.


IV. Religious Significance and Worship:
A. Pilgrimage and Rituals: The Yamuna River holds immense religious significance for Hindus, attracting countless pilgrims seeking spiritual purification. Bathing in the Yamuna River during auspicious occasions and festivals is considered highly meritorious. Devotees believe that a dip in the sacred river can cleanse them of sins and bestow spiritual blessings.

B. Yamuna Aarti and Festivals: Devotional rituals, such as the Yamuna Aarti, are performed on the riverbanks to honor Yamuna. The Aarti involves the offering of lamps, flowers, and prayers to the goddess, accompanied by melodious hymns. Additionally, festivals like Yamuna Jayanti and Kartik Purnima celebrate Yamuna’s presence and her role as a divine deity.


V. Yamuna in Hindu Literature and Art:
Yamuna’s significance extends beyond religious practices to literature and art forms. Poets and writers have composed verses praising the beauty and sanctity of the Yamuna River. Artistic representations depict Yamuna in various forms, often accompanied by Lord Krishna or other deities, symbolizing her inseparable association with divinity.


VI. Spiritual Teachings and Lessons from Yamuna:
A. Devotion and Surrender: Yamuna embodies the essence of pure love and devotion to the divine. Her association with Lord Krishna and the Raslila inspire devotees to deepen their spiritual connection and cultivate unwavering devotion. Yamuna teaches the importance of surrendering oneself completely to God, experiencing divine bliss, and nurturing a loving relationship with the divine.


Yamuna, the Hindu goddess of the sacred Yamuna River, occupies a significant position in Hindu mythology and worship. Her association with Lord Krishna, her symbolism as the personification of the Yamuna River, and her deep-rooted religious significance make her an essential deity in Hindu culture. Devotees revere and honor Yamuna through pilgrimage, rituals, and festivals, seeking spiritual purification and blessings. Yamuna’s stories, teachings, and artistic representations continue to inspire individuals on their spiritual journeys, emphasizing the essence of devotion, surrender, and the eternal union between the individual soul and the Supreme Soul.



In Hindu tradition, there are many gods and goddesses for various purposes. For example, Hindus believe in Agni as the sun god, Indra as the storm god, Vayu as the wind god and so on. Yamuna is a Hindu goddess (devi) of the river, who is also known as Yami. In Hindu mythology, Yamuna devi is the daughter of the sun god Surya and his wife Saranyu, and also the sister of the death god Yama. In Vedic tradition, the twins Yama and Yami were the first mortal human pair. Yamuna first appears in the Ṛg veda as Yami, where she urges cohabitation with Yama her brother to perpetuate the human race. However, Yama is very religious thus he refuses Yami’s incestuous overture. Therefore, Yamuna portrayed as a goddesses of boundless love and passion, who does not follow the dictates of reason in expressing her emotion (Kumar, James). This incident did not break their sibling relationship or diminish the affection of Yamuna for her brother. Although Yami’s brother Yama is the god of death, he is considered to be one of the most dharmic entities, becoming also known as the “King of Righteousness” (Haberman 137). After a long time when Yama visits her sister, she treats him with honour and delightful food which pleased Yami. Then he confers upon her a boon that if any brother and sister come together to worship Yamuna and bathe in her sacred water then they will never see the gates of hell (Kumar, James). In the Hindu tradition, the fifth day of Divali or the second lunar day after the new moon in the month of karttika (Oct–Nov), popularly called yamadvitiya or bhaiyaduj, is dedicated to Yama and Yami. On this day brothers and sisters come together and express their love and gratitude for each other. Hindus believe that she is a very powerful goddess, who manifests life-giving forces and blessings. According to ancient beliefs, Yamuna is considered pure and whoever takes a dip in her holy waters may not have fear of death. Moreover, anyone can diminish the reactions of his sinful activities. She is claimed as the consort of Siva and Visnu. Her waters are said to be the liquid embodiment of sakti.

Yamuna is the largest tributary river of the Ganges in Northern India. The Yamuna River, also known as the Jamuna River in Bengali, and is the largest tributary river of the Ganges (Ganga) in northern India. This river unites with Ganga after receiving water from all the major tributaries. Without the Ganga, Siva would remain the scorching, brilliant linga of fire; without Siva, the Ganga would flood the earth (Hawley, Wulff, and Marie148).Yamuna might be the Goddess of Love par excellence in the Hindu pantheon, and is often referred to as a river of love (Haberman 116). Moreover, she is a goddess of exquisite love and compassion. In the pantheon of Hindu goddesses, it would be difficult to find one more representative of divine love than Yamuna (Haberman 104). The rivers Ganga and Yamuna, along with the now dried Saraswati, are the most sacred rivers in India. The source of the Yamuna lies in Yamunotri Glacier, on the south western slopes of Banderpooch peaks, which lies on the Mussoorie range of Lower Himalayas, in Uttarkand, north of Haridwar. Yamunotri temple is a shrine dedicated to the goddess Yamuna and is one of the holiest shrines in Hinduism. According to Hindu scripture, Yamunotri is famous as one of the four most sacred pilgrim places. During the peak season of late May and early June, people from all social backgrounds and all walks of life: rich and poor, young and old visit this pilgrim place. Moreover, some pilgrims prefer to ride horses although walking is considered to be the most auspicious mode of transportation (Haberman 49). Others are known as Gangotri, Badrinath, and Kedarnath. These are all in the Himalayas. In winter, when snow covers the place, the Yamunotri temple closes down, and the image of Yamuna devi is carried down to the tiny mountain village of Kharsali where she continues to be worshipped for six months. This temple is reopened every year on the third day of the bright fortnight of the lunar month vaishakha (April–May). Some argue that the river is only free and pure in the mountains (Kumar, James).

In Hindu religious texts, especially in Puranas, there are many myths interconnecting with Yamuna and Krsna, another Hindu god and also known as a divine playboy (Haberman110). Krsna was taken across the Yamuna River on the night of his birth, as his maternal uncle planned to kill him. However, Vasudeva, Krsna’s father carried him in a basket on that rainy night and after reaching in front of the Yamuna River, it is said to have parted to make path for Vasudeva. The river Yamuna is closely connected to the Mahabharata and Lord Krsna (kumar, James). Yamuna River was blessed by Krsna when he fell down into the river from his father Vasudeva’s hand while crossing the river. He used to play along with his cowherd friends on the banks of river Yamuna during his childhood. This river is a recurring image in all stories of Krsna: she watched his father carry him across the river to Gokul, and she watched him herd (Haberman 114). In an article titled “Yamuna and the Environment,” Devendra Sharma writes, “Yamuna exists in Krsna, and Krsna exists in Yamuna.” She is the primary lover of Krsna. The bhagvatapuraṇa, however, narrates a story of the marriage of Yamuna and Kṛṣṇa. Once when Kṛṣṇa and Arjuna are walking along the banks of the Yamuna, they spot a young and beautiful woman absorbed in deep penance and austerity. When Arjuna approaches her, she discloses her identity as Kalindi, daughter of the sun, and expresses her desire to marry none but Viṣṇu-Kṛṣṇa. Impressed with her devotion and love, Kṛṣṇa takes Kalindi- Yamuna to Dvarka (now Dwarka, a city on the banks of the Gomati River near the Arabian Sea), where she becomes his wife (Kumar, James). Yamuna bountifully makes her love for Kṛṣṇa accessible to all her devotees and with her divine powers increases their bhaktibhava (feeling for devotional love). She removes all obstructions and impurities that keep devotees from direct access to the divine love of Kṛṣṇa. At Braj, the bluish-green waters of Yamuna assume a darker hue, indicating her divine union with the dark-skinned Kṛṣṇa (Haberman 117).

In the Puranas, “Kaliya Daman” is one of the famous stories of Krsna and Yamuna. Kaliya was a poisonous snake who used to live in the depth of the river Yamuna and terrorized the people of Braja. Lord Krsna killed this poisonous snake. From the history of Yamuna, she appears as a triple goddess because of flowing in three directions. As a triple river, Yamuna is said to flow on the earth, where she is known as Bhagirathi, in heaven, known as Mandakini, and in the underworld, known as Patala Ganga or as Bhogavati (Darian 69). Moreover, she is one of the blessing goddesses among all Hindu goddesses and Hindus believe that she grants blessings especially for marriage, children, health, and other domestic concern.

The Yamuna River is also well known for ritual baths and purification. People come to do their worship in this river. There are three primary centers of Yamuna worship in Braj- Vishram Ghat in Mathura, Keshi Ghat in Vrindaban, and Thakurani Ghat in Gokul (Haberman 100). The ancient stone steps lead down into the river and are always lineal with crowds of colourfully dressed people to worship Yamuna. Women especially wear beautiful green saris and greet Yamuna with a copper pot full of milk, sticks of incense, baskets of red roses, food and so on. They scoop water from the river, take 3 sips, and then pour it on their head. In this way they do their puja. At the end of the worship, they lights three sticks of incense, wave them before the river, and insert them into the sands by their side. This act of worship can be seen on the sixth lunar day of the fortnight. In almost all the arati hymns sung during her services, she is addressed as “Mother Yamuna,” and those who come to worship her daily greet her with the same epithet (Haberman 108). In addition, Yamuna Chath is celebrated on the sixth day of the bright half of the lunar month chaitra, which usually falls on April in solar calendar. This festival known as Yamuna Jayanti, is considered to be the celebration of Yamuna’s birthday. Hindu people celebrate this occasion with much happiness and redundant. The women step forward to the river to offer sweets, red sindur powder, and uncooked rice. Finally they offer a red sari along with necklaces, bangles, a comb, bindis, and a mirror to the goddess Yamuna, laying them on the sand at the edge of the water. This occasion and puja is occurred at Vishram Ghat by the priests and they seem to be very busy with more formal pujas for families and groups of pilgrims who come to worship the Yamuna. Then, later, the priests bring those items back to those women (Haberman 97). Whenever the offerings have been made, the priests led the group in singing a famous hymn to Yamuna, the ‘Yamunashtakam,’ written by the Vallabhacharya in the sixteenth century. After completing the hymn, Hindu people start to celebrate the climax of the birthday party by dressing the river goddess with a sari that stretched from shore to shore, with the aid of eight wooden boats.

The river Yamuna, the major tributary of the Ganges River has one of the most populated areas of Asia in its basin. This river is now polluted, especially downstream from Delhi. However, there are some cultural views of this pollution. Some Hindu people, who are devoted to Yamuna devi, think that the water of this river can never be impure even though it gets polluted. They believe the goddess Yamuna has the power which can save the quality of this river’s water and also can handle all the pollutants sent her way. Therefore, the water of Yamuna can never harm any living things on this earth. On the other hand, others feel this pollution is causing harm to humans, animals and also the goddess Yamuna. They think that this river’s water needs to be clean so that people can be free from various diseases caused by this polluted water. Nowadays, some Hindus have stopped bathing and using water from this river, which has caused various diseases. In the Yamuna Nagar district, rapid industrialization is taking place due to urbanization. The Yamuna River’s water was polluted by humans and heavy metals. In addition, organic compounds and large number of industrial effluent is thrown into this river which does not have apparent deleterious symptoms but led to accumulation of heavy metals in various parts of plants (Narwal 159). The existing heavy metals can be harmful for the ecosystem. To get rid of these heavy metals some possible approaches should be taken by all human beings in order to keep the environment clean and safe such as: avoid making industries near the Yamuna River, throwing organic compounds to the river, and also keeping the surface area of the river clean as much as possible. Moreover, water, air, trees, lands all are environmental resources which are beneficial to the society. Among them, water is one of the main resources of the environment without which people cannot pass a single day (Narwal 163). Yamuna River is an important river that flows through India’s capital New Delhi and supports various socio-economic activities in this basin. Even though this river is polluted, any improvement of the water quality can improve the utility of the river along with the citizens’ welfare (Nallathiga, Paravasthu 263).

To sum up, it can be said that the goddess Yamuna is a loving goddess and is believed to have the power to purify a person and make him or her fearless towards death. The worshippers of Yamuna devi, used to bath in the Yamuna River to wash away all their sins and to be purified. However, nowadays, it is not possible for them to take bath in this river’s water due to the serious pollution. This river’s water is not only important for the ritual bath, but also plays an important role in socio-economic condition. Therefore, it is the government’s and the citizens’ duty to keep this river’s water clean and should control the heavy metals in the environment which is causing damage to it.



Introduction to Yamunotri Temple
Yamunotri temple is a famous Hindu temple dedicated to Goddess Yamuna and is located in the Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand. The temple is the origin of the Holy River Yamuna and is one the Chota Char Dham circuit of Uttarakhand and is one of the significant pilgrimage sites visited by many pilgrims. The temple is situated opposite to the Yamunotri glacier and is perched at a height of 3150 m above sea level. Yamunotri temple is known for its calm and serene surrounding which attracts many tourists, trekkers, theologizes and naturalists from around the world.

History & Legend of Yamunotri Temple
Yamunotri Temple

The original Yamunotri temple is believed to be constructed by Tehri Naresh Sudarshan Shah in 1839, which was destructed during an earthquake. Later Maharaja Gularia of Jaipur rebuilt the temple during the 19th century.


According to a legend, Sage Asti Muni in his early life took bath daily in the Rivers Ganga and Yamuna. Later when he turned old, he was unable to reach Gangotri, and impressed with his religious beliefs, Ganga emerged as a small stream next to River Yamuna to help him continue his rituals.

Yamuna Devi is believed to be the daughter of Surya Devta and Saranyu Devi who is the Goddess of perception. Yamuna is also the sister or Lord Yama, God of death and is called by the name Yami, who later became the consort of Lord Krishna. A legend describes Yamuna to be very playful in nature, owing to her mother cursed by Lord Surya for blinking her eyes, unable to look at his excessive radiance.

The “Yamunotri Mahatmya” of the Skanda Purana acts as a major source of history and mythology for the priests here, based on which the daily poojas and rituals are conducted.

Significance of Yamunotri Temple
Yamunotri temple represents the origin of the sacred river Yamuna. The actual source of the river is a frozen glacier called as Champasar glacier, at an altitude of 4421 m. From this region, a Kund or Lake appears which is known as the Sapta Rishi Kund. Trekking to this place is extremely difficult, but it’s worth a visit as this is the spot where the sacred flower, ‘Brahma Kamal’ blooms once a year during July – Aug. The flower has divine significancein Hindu Mythology. It is believed that the white stamen of the flower represents Lord Krishna and the reddish stalks are believed to the 100 Kauravas. It is also believed that Lord Shiva replaced the head of Lord Ganeshawith an elephant head using Brahma Kamal.

There is a common belief that the color of the river is black because it has engrossed the pain and sorrow of Lord Shiva after the death of his wife Sati.

Architecture of Yamunotri Temple
Yamunotri Temple is constructed in the Nagar style of architecture with granite stones excavated from the surrounding mountains. The temple has a main conical shaped minaret, pale yellow in color with bright vermilion border. The main deity Yamuna Devi is installed under the main minaret. The idol is made of polished black ebony marble with exquisite carvings.

As described in the ancient scriptures, the idol of Yamuna Devi is seated on a tortoise in the sanctum. A standing idol of Goddess Ganga made of white stone is beside her. There is also a Mandap or assembly hall to accommodate the pilgrims. The core chamber or Garbagriha also houses a silver idol of Goddess Yamuna which is 1 feet tall and adorned with many garlands. All the offerings and rituals are made to the silver idol at the temple.

Festivals Related to Yamunotri Temple
Basant Panchami – This festival indicates the arrival of spring and end of winter and is celebrated during January or February. The day is marked by various cultural programs and special Poojas organized for the deity. People usually wear traditional yellow colored dresses on this day.
Phool Dei – This festival is celebrated on the first day of March and is celebrated mainly by young girls and children. They offer bag or plate filled with rice, flowers, jaggery and coconut to neighbours. In turn, they are also blessed with money, rice, sweets and jaggery. A special savory named Sei is offered to Goddess Yamuna on this day.
Olgia – Also known as Ghee Sankaranti, this festival is celebrated in the month of August to commemorate the harvesting season and agricultural yield. The day is marked by special adornment of ghee in people’s foreheads and eating of Dal Chappatis with ghee. According to older traditions, nephews and son-in-laws offered gifts to maternal uncles and fathers-in-law respectively. However as per the new custom, gifts, and good wishes are exchanged between artisans and their customers. Farmers and their landlords also exchange gifts on this special occasion.
Benefits of Visiting Yamunotri Temple
Yamunotri is one of the Chota Char Dham temple circuits of Uttarakhand. Various Puranas such as Padma Purana mention that taking a holy bath in the River Yamuna washes away the sins of an individual and grants Moksha or salvation. A ritual is a must for all the pilgrims to cook a handful of rice and potatoes in a muslin cloth at the hot water sulfur spring of Surya Kund. This is considered as a “Prasadam” or offering which is meant as a spiritual cleanser.

How to reach Yamunotri Temple
By Air: The nearest airport to the Yamunotri temple is the Jolly Grant Airport at Dehradun, 210 km from the temple. Regular flights are plied by Air India, Spicejet and Jet airways from New Delhi and Lucknow.

By Train: The nearest railway station is Dehradun (175 km) and Rishikesh (200km). Regular trains are available from cities like Delhi, Mumbai and Chandigarh. From the stations, Hanuman Chatti is accessible by road.

By Road: Buses are available from major cities in Uttarakhand like Rishikesh, Tehri, Barkot, Dehradun, and Uttarkashi to Hanuman Chatti.

The starting point for visiting Yamunotri is either Hanuman Chatti or Janki Chatti. Devotees can commute the first 5 km of a 13 km trek from Hanuman Chatti by jeep and reach Phool Chatti. From Phool Chatti, a trek of 5 km leads to Janki Chatti. Further trek of 5 km from Janki Chatti has to be undertaken to reach Yamunotri.


The river is called Yamuna and the goddess generally Kalindi in sources related to Krishna. She is also, according to some sources, a form of Nila Devi.

In an myth related to Krishna’s birth, Krishna’s father Vasudeva was carrying the new-born Krishna to safety was crossing the Yamuna River, he asked Yamuna to make a way for him to cross the river, which she did by creating a passage. This was the first time that she saw Krishna whom she marries in later life. Yamuna wanted to touch the feet of the baby which she did at deeper depths of the river and as a result the river became very calm.

Krishna also spent most of youth in Vrindavan on the banks of Yamuna, playing the flute and playing with his lover Radha and the gopis on the banks. It is said that Kalindi fell in love with Him as she saw His Eternal love with Radha.

The Bhagwata Purana narrates: Once, an adult Krishna visited his cousins the five Pandava brothers with their common wife Draupadi and their mother Kunti in their capital Indraprastha, located on the banks of the Yamuna. The eldest PandavaYudhistira requests Krishna to stay with them for a couple of days. One day, Krishna and the middle Pandava Arjuna go for hunting in the forest. During their hunting, Arjuna was tired. He and Krishna went to the Yamuna and bathed and drank the clear water. There, a lovely girl was strolling along the river bank. Krishna who saw her and asked Arjuna to meet her to know who she was. When Arjuna inquired, the girl told him that she was Kalindi, the daughter of Surya, and that she was living in a house constructed by her father in the river where she has been was performing austerities with intent to have Vishnu as her husband and would remain there, until she finds him. Arjuna conveys Kalindi’s message to Krishna, the avatar of Vishnu, who readily agreed to marry the beautiful damsel. Then they traveled to Indraprastha with Kalindi in the chariot and met Yudhishthira. After a stay of few days there, Krishna and Kalindi returned to his capital Dwarka with their entourage and duly married each other .

Yamuna bountifully makes her love for Krishna accessible to all her devotees and with her divine powers increases their bhaktibhava (feeling for devotional love). She removes all obstructions and impurities that keep devotees from direct access to the divine love of Krishna. At Braj, the bluish-green waters of Yamuna assume a darker hue, indicating her divine union with the dark-skinned Krishna.


According to Bhagavata Purana she had ten sons: Shruta, Kavi, Vrsa, Vira, Subahu, Bhadra, Santi, Darsa, Purnamasa and the youngest, Somaka.The Vishnu Purana mentions that she had many sons headed by Shruta.

The Bhagavata Purana also narrates: Krishna’s elder brother Balarama was staying in Ambadi on Yamuna’s banks for a few months. Once, he was frolicking with the gopis on the river banks and desired to play in the waters. Intoxicated with liquor and experiencing heat of the alcohol, Balarama felt to take a bath in the river. However, he refused to walk to the waters and called upon the river to come near him, but the chaste Yamuna refused despite repeated orders from Balarama. An angry Balarama dragged the river by his weapon the plough and changed its course, hurting the river goddess. Terrified, the river assumed her form as a goddess and bowed to Balarama and asked his forgiveness. A calmed Balarama ordered the river to flood the forest so he could bathe and play in her waters, and the river complied.