Krishna Janamashtami celebrations remain low key affair across J&K

Idols of Lord Krishna and Radha fully decorated in historical Raghunath temple on the occasion of Janamashtami on Wednesday. —Excelsior/Rakesh
Idols of Lord Krishna and Radha fully decorated in historical Raghunath temple on the occasion of Janamashtami on Wednesday. —Excelsior/Rakesh

No Shoba Yatras taken out, religious congregations also not held

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Aug 12: The celebrations of Shree Krishna Janamashtami remained a low key affair in Jammu region today as the temples and religious places have been closed by the Government as a precautionary measure to ensure safety and security of people in view of alarming rise in COVID Pandemic cases.
It is for the first time that neither Shoba Yatras were taken out in Jammu and other areas of the region on the occasion of Janamashtami festival nor the religious congregations were held in the temples to celebrate the function with much religious fanfare and enthusiasm while mostly the people preferred to remain indoors following the guidelines of the Government.
However, the temples were decorated by the respective management committees and devotees as usual with buntings and flowers but no major function was held in connection with the celebrations of the festival in any temple across the region for the first time.
Even the Jhankis which were to be taken out in different localities of Jammu were also cancelled this time by the devotees following the guidelines on COVID and for the safety and security of people. The people however preferred to celebrate the occasion at their residence by performing Puja -Archana to Lord Krishna.
As the grand Shoba yatra, which was taken out in Jammu city from Raghunath Temple, Raghuanth Bazar every year by Dharmarth Trust and Sanatan Dharam Sabha (SDS) was missing this time and the devotees were also not allowed to enter the temple for offering obeisance on the occasion holy festival to Lord however the rituals were performed inside the temple by the Management Committee of the Dharmarth Trust at Raghunath mandir and SDS at Geeta Bhawan as usual.
The Murthis of Lord Krishna, Radha and Baliram were brought out from Grab Grah (Sanctum Sanctorum) to temple premises to perform the religious rituals and Maha Abhishekh. The Bogh was also performed to Lord as usual. The Puja -Archana was held by the management of the Trust and Pujaris upto midnight till birth of the Lord which was followed by serving of Prashad.
The Sanatan Dharam Sabha (SDS) also held Puja -Archana at Geeta Bhawan from this evening to late night in which a limited gathering of its members was allowed. The religious Programme lasted upto the midnight till birth of Lord and prashad was served to devotees later.
Likewise no programme was held in ISCKON Temple, Dream City Jammu on the occasion of Janam Ashtami today as has been a routine affair since its establishment. But , the online Abhishekh of Lord Krishna was held. The religious rituals in the temple were performed as usual besides Maha Abhisekh and Bhog was also performed on the occasion. However, the temple was closed for the devotees this time to follow the COVID guidelines but it was fully decorated as usual.
Maintaining social distancing and following the COVID guidelines, a Bhajan Mandli was organised by K P volunteers At Geeta Bhawan Muthi which continued up to midnight.
Bhajan Mandlis were also held in various temple premises and the devotees in different parts also burst crackers.
As per reports, the devotees in various Shree Krishna temples in Jammu city and its outskirts had established small Jhankis inside the temple premises by decorating the idols of Lord Krishna in them besides performing Puja –Archna to keep the age -old rituals intact.
The reports coming from other districts also said that no major function was held in any temple which remained mostly closed for devotees however the religious rituals in connection with the celebrations of the festival were held by the management Committee and the respective pujaris of these temples.
Reports coming from Kashmir Valley also said that no major function was held in any temple on the occasion of Janam Ashtami but a small number of devotees visited some temples in Srinagar city to pay their obeisance to Lord.