Today, the Hindu festival of Krishna Janmashtami is being celebrated across the country. The festival celebrates the birth of Lord Krishna, believed to be the eighth avatar of Lord Vishnu. Janmashtami is the largest festival in the Braj region of north India - Mathura - where he was born, and in Vrindavan where is believed to have grown up. Temples are decorated and special programmes are organised in Mathura and Vrindavan to celebrate Lord Krishna's birth. Devotees come from far and wide to visit the holy temples of Vrindavan and Mathura.
Despite heavy rainfall, lakhs of devotees reached Mathura yesterday for the Janmashtami celebrations. They are likely to gather around Vrindavan or in Govardhan and Barsana for the celebration. The ritual of Dahi Handi is also a popular celebration of the festival.
Here are the Highlights on Janmashtami celebations across the country:
The famous Krishna temples in Delhi - Laxmi Narayan Mandir, ISKCON temple, Amar Colony, Kirhsna Pranami Mandir, Hare Krishna Mandir among others, were specially decorated up for the festival.
Despite rains, devotees thronged temples in the morning and participated in the special ceremony marking the birth of Lord Krishna in the night. Many also observed day-long fast on the occasion, said the PTI report.
Special processions were taken out from temples in different parts of the city which saw participation of a large number of people.
Colourful tableaux depicting the story of Lord Krishna's birth were displayed at Janmashtami Park in Punjabi Bagh and other areas. In residential areas, cultural groups displayed special 'Jhankis' of Lord Krishna, according to news agency PTI.
Delhi Traffic Police made special arrangements to manage crowds and vehicle movements around temples and venues of Janmashtami celebrations, the PTI report said.
The secretary of Sri Krishna Janmasthan, Kapil Sharma, said with special arrangements put in place this year, devotees could pay obeisance to the deity without any obstacle and could get prasadam easily.
According to him nearly 20 lakh pilgrims paid their obeisance in the temples of Mathura, Vrindaban, Barsana, Govardhan, Nandgaon, Baldeo, Mahaban and Gokul, reported news agency PTI.
The dahi handi ritual is part of the Janmashtami festival in Maharashtra, where youngsters (called Govindas), dressed in colourful attire, make human pyramid to reach an earthen pot containing buttermilk and suspended in mid-air, and break it.
I extend my warm greetings and good wishes to the people of our country on the auspicious occasion of Janmashtami. Janmashtami marks the birth of Lord Krishna has a special religious importance in our country. #Janmashtamipic.twitter.com/pui5U6A2tP- VicePresidentOfIndia (@VPSecretariat) September 3, 2018
The Bombay High Court last year eased restrictions on the Dahi Handi celebrations, accepting with the state government that it is an "adventure sport". The court agreed to lower the age limit for participating 'Govindas' to 14
Greetings to everyone on the auspicious occasion of Shri Krishna Janmashtami. श्रीकृष्ण जन्माष्टमी के पावन अवसर पर सभी को हार्दिक शुभकामनाएं.- Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) September 3, 2018
Janmashtami greetings to everyone.- Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) September 3, 2018
श्रीकृष्ण जन्माष्टमी के पावन अवसर पर सभी को हार्दिक शुभकामनाएं। जय श्रीकृष्ण!