Eight days after the full moon, the birth ceremony of Lord Krishna is commemorated in a grandiose manner in different parts of India. The celebration of Krishna Janmashtami usually takes places between August and September, on the eighth day of Shravan. India is home to many beautiful Krishna temples. Noteworthy among them are Gujarat’s Dwarkadhish Temple, ISKCON Vrindavan, ISKCON Bangalore and ISKCON Delhi. Also, the tallest temple in the world dedicated to Lord Krishna is also coming up in Mathura in 2022. Here are the versatile ways in which the states of India celebrate Janmashtami:
1. Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh
Vrindavan is believed to be the place where Lord Krishna had spent a major part of his childhood. No wonder, the birthday of Kanha is celebrated with great zeal in this holy city. Many prominent temples at this place like the ISKCON temple, Rangnathji Temple, Banke Bihari Temple and Radharaman Temple hold important rituals on the occasion of Janmashtami. The Madhuban in Vrindavan is believed to be the place where Lord Krishna performed Raas Leelas. Many folk performances take place at Madhuban during Janmashtami and its aura attracts tourists from all parts of India and the world.
The birthplace of Krishna, Mathura is splendidly decked up on the occasion. During this time, the swings of Krishna’s cradle dresses up in pretty flowers. The main celebration takes place at Mathura’s Krishna Janma Bhoomi Mandir.
We must have seen the act of Dahi Handi in many popular movie scenes and songs. In this practice, a pitcher of curd is hung at a great height from ground level. Young boys, symbolizing Lord Krishna, form a pyramid, and one particular person climbs up the pyramid to crack the pitcher. They chant ‘Govinda, Govinda’ while taking part in the stunt.
3. Dwarka, Gujarat
Dwarka, Gujarat has earned a historic recognition as the kingdom of Lord Krishna. The Dwarkadhish Temple is thus dedicated to him. On the day of Janmashtami, the temple premises look breathtaking with an array of beautiful lights and vibrant decorations. The Dwarkadhish Temple worships Krishna in his infant form, with kirtans and bhajans. The temple authorities embellish Lord Dwarkadhish with gold, diamond and other precious jewellery. On this occasion, women all across Gujarat give up their household work for a day and play cards.
The Hindus in Imphal celebrate the festival offering prayers to Shri Shri Govindajee temple, Imphal, ISKCON and awe-inspiring Manipuri performances, dedicated to the Lord, take place during this time.
Picture Credits: Twitter/ SS Kim
5. Odisha and West Bengal
6. Andhra Pradesh
Devotees of Andhra Pradesh sing devotional songs and recite shlokas during this festival. Young boys of the state dress up as Lord Krishna on the occasion to visit friends and neighbours. A large variety of fruits and sweets are offered to Lord Krishna. People here usually worship the paintings of Krishna instead of idols.
Want to be a part of these celebrations? Well, in that case, you might have to wait till next year. But, this year, ISKCON temples all across India are celebrating Janmashtami online so that can immerse in the vibes of festivity virtually. Meanwhile, here’s a pandal hopping experience through the streets of Kolkata during the city’s biggest festival, Durga Puja: