Visakhapatnam: Thousands of devotees took part in the ‘giri pradakshina’ ritual, marking the auspicious ‘Ashada Poornami’ at the Sri Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha temple atop the Simhachalam hill near here Monday. The Giri Pradakshina (walking around the hill) ritual is considered very sacred, auspicious and believed to be equivalent to walking around the world (Prapancha pradikshina), according to temple sources. Some believe it is equal to ‘Kailash pradakshina” (circumambulation of the holy mountain of Kailash the abode of Lord Shiva). Devotees believe that by doing Giri Pradikshina all their wishes will come true and their family will be blessed. The total walking distance is 32 km. Police had made tight arrangements for the annual event.