It’s 5 a.m. And it’s freezing cold. We’re at the most sacred river to Hindus – but also one of the most polluted rivers in the world – The Ganges River.

Horns howl at a steady pace, and there is a thick fog over the Holy River just outside Varanasi in northern India. Hindus gather here to attempt to get forgiveness of sins. Locals as well as tourists, especially from South Korea, pray and sing the sacred river, while Hindus go out into the wather. The night before this, there have been cremations and associated ceremonies for the dead Hindus. The bereaved family members have taken down the ashes to the river to spreden the addition in the holy river, so their relatives can achieve true salvation. © Claus Randrup.