Every year, the festival of Janamashtami is celebrated by Hindus to mark the birth of Lord Krishna, who is believed to be the incarnation of Lord Vishnu. As per the Hindu calendar, Lord Krishna was born on the eighth day of the month of Bhadra. The day mostly falls in the months of August or September as per the Western calendar. The festival of Janamashtami is celebrated by offering prayers to Lord Krishna, with beautifully decorated swings, dance and music performances, and the Dahi Handi competition.
Many state governments announce holidays for schools and other institutions on the occasion of Janmashtami, but there are some government institutions that remain functional. The private schools too follow the orders issued by respective state government and announced their schedule accordingly. Private schools in Uttar Pradesh have announced holiday on Friday (August 19) on Janmashtami. In Himachal Pradesh too, the government has holiday for schools.
The direction to declare Janmashtami a public holiday vary from state to state. Various state governments like Kerala, Karnataka, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh have not declared Janmahtami as public holiday. However, schools and colleges will remain closed in the Nilgiris in Kerala as India Meteorological Department (IMD) has warned of heavy rainfall in Nilgiris, Coimbatore, Dindigul and Tirupur districts.
When it comes to bank holiday, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) calendar shows branches in Ahmedabad, Bhopal, Chandigarh, Chennai, Dehradun, Gangtok, Jaipur, Jammu, Kanpur, Lucknow, Patna, Raipur, Ranchi, Shillong, Shimla and Srinagar will remain closed tomorrow.
The RBI notifies holidays under three categories - the Negotiable Instruments Act, Holiday, Real Time Gross Settlement Holiday and Banks' Closing of Accounts.
Birth of Lord Krishna
Lord Krishna is said to have been born in a dungeon in present-day Mathura, Uttar Pradesh. He was born to Queen Devaki and King Vasudev at midnight. Hence, as per tradition, the Krishna Janmashtami puja is performed in the Nishita Kaal, which is around midnight.
History and significance of Janmashtami
As per belief, Kansa, brother of Queen Devaki, heard a prophecy that Lord Krishna was born to destroy him. Thus, Kansa tried to eliminate infant Krishna but before he could do that, Krishna was safely sent out of the dark dungeon. King Vasudeva crossed the Yamuna River carrying Krishna over his head in a basket and provided him a safe haven in Gokul.
In the Mahabharata, the account of Lord Krishna as Arjuna's charioteer during the Kurukshetra war is one that is most widely recognised. He maintained Arjuna's allegiance to dharma.
Since Lord Krishna is considered as the protector of Dharma and destroyer of Adharma, his birth is commemorated nationwide on Janmashtami.
The day of Krishna Janmashtami celebrates the love, warmth, and beauty that Lord Krishna represents.