Janmashtami is one of the most popular annual festivals of India which is celebrated on the birthday of Lord Krishna, the eighth avatar of Vishnu. It is observed on the eighth day (Ashtami) of the Krishna Paksha in the month of Shrawana according to Hindu Calendar, which overlaps with the Gregorian calendar in the month of August and September.
Lord Krishna Devotees from across the globe come to visit the holy temples of Vrindavan and Mathura where the celebrations are special and people catch a glimpse of the celebrations and sing and chant prayers and mantras all night long, and at the end of the festivities, Prasad is distributed. It is not just the temples in Mathura and Vrindavan but even the houses all over Northern India are wonderfully decorated and illuminated on this day and cultural programmes are organized on Janmashtami. People of the family observe fast by eating fruits and eat prasad after midnight. Kids are Dressed up as “Govindas” with Flute and little girls dressed as Radha in Colourful dresses. This is the festival of joy and happiness where people come together from every religion.
In Maharashtra and other western states of India the story of Krishna of ‘Dahi Handi’ is played out as a community event which is a spectators rejoice, where the earthen pots filled with yoghurt are hung high and teams of youth called the “Govindas” climb one over another and form a human pyramid, around to these hanging pots to break the pot.
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