It was billed as the best place to see the eclipse and as this astonishing picture shows the tiny Indian village of Taregna in eastern India sure drew in the crowds.
Shoulder to shoulder the masses ranks of eclipse hunters gathered to witness the longest solar eclipse of the 21st century.
At 6.24 am (0054 GMT) live TV pictures were beamed from the location, 300 miles north-west of Calcutta, where assorted scientists, including Nasa, had said it would be the best place to watch the eclipse.
The eclipse – caused when the moon moves directly between the sun and the earth, covering it completely to cast a shadow on earth – lasted almost 4 minutes in India. In some parts of Asia it lasted as long as 6 minutes and 39 seconds.
In Taregna, thousands had gathered a day in advance but thick clouds and overnight rains provided no spectacle, just a cloudy darkness.
‘It was still a unique experience with morning turning into night for more than three minutes,” said Amitabh Pande, a scientist with India’s Science Popularization Association of Communicators and Educators, who was there.