In Hinduism, the river Ganges is referred to as Gaṅga and is considered a very sacred river. Personified as a goddess, Gaṅga is worshiped by Hindus who believe that bathing in the river causes total removal of all sins and facilitates liberation from the cycle of life and death. Pilgrims travel long distances to immerse the ashes of their kin in the waters of the Ganges, bringing the departed souls closer to liberation.
The 2,525 km holy river rises in the western Himalayas in the Indian state of Uttarakhand, and flows south and east through the Gangetic Plain of North India into Bangladesh, where it empties into the Bay of Bengal. It is the longest river of India and is the second greatest river in the world by water discharge.
Several places sacred to Hindus lie along the banks of the river Ganga, including Gangotri, Haridwar, Rishikesh, Allahabad and Varanasi.
The Ganges is the most sacred river to the Hindus and is also a lifeline to millions of Indians who live along its course and depend on it for their daily needs. It is worshiped as the goddess Ganga in Hinduism. It has also been important historically.Many former provincial or imperial capitals such as Patliputra, Kannauj, Kara, Kashi, Allahabad, Murshidabad, Munger, Baharampur, Kampilya and Kolkata have been located on the banks of the Ganges.
Baharampur, Kampilya and Kolkata have been located on the banks of the Ganges.