Hassid pilgrims from more than 20 countries came to mark the 201nd anniversary of the death of revered Jewish prophet Rabbi Nachman, who is buried in the city. This year also stood out in terms of the economic impact for the city of 87,000 people.
“In 2011 we received Hr 500,000 from Hassids for utilities and other services, three times more than in 2010. This year the amount is even more,” says Petro Payevskyi, deputy mayor of Uman, who is in charge of the pilgrimage.
Over the years the pilgrimage has not been without its scandals, including fights that broke out between locals and guests. In 2010 two local men ended up in hospital and eight Hassids were deported in 2011. Local nationalists fanned the flames with demonstrations demanding the remains of Nachman be moved to Israel and the pilgrimage banned.