Krishna Janmashtami 2020: COVID-19 casts shadow on festivities

Updated: 12 August, 2020 13:01 IST | Sunny Rodricks
  • Krishna Janmashtami, also popularly known as Gokulashtami, is celebrated to mark the birth of Lord Krishna, who is believed to be the eighth avatar of Lord Vishnu.

    In photo: Priests bathe the idols of Lord Krishna and his consort Radha with honey as part of Krishna Janmashtami celebrations at the International Society of Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) Temple in Bangalore.

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  • As per the Hindu calendar, Krishna Janmashtami is observed on the eighth day (Ashtami) of the Krishna Paksha in the month of Sharavan or Bhadrapad. While Mathura and Vrindavan witness one of the pompous celebrations of Krishna Janmashtami, in Mumbai it is widely celebrated as Dahi Handi Utsav.

    In photo: A woman looks on at an idol of Lord Krishna in Amritsar.

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  • In photo: A group of youngsters sitting beside a graffiti of Lord Krishna in Noida.

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  • On the eve of Krishna Janmashtami, Prime Minister Narendra Modi greeted the country with chants of "Jai Shri Krishna". While extending greeting, President Ram Nath Kovind said that Lord Krishna's teachings are evident among India's COVID-19 warriors.

    In photo: An artist paints a statue of Lord Krishna at a workshop in Chennai.

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  • A day before the Krishna Janmashtami festival, Vrindavan's Iskcon temple was sealed after 22 persons, including priests, tested positive for COVID-19.

    In photo: A woman paints a statue of Lord Krishna at a workshop in Chennai.

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  • While the Krishna Janmashtami is celebrated across the country by enacting dance-dramas, singing devotional songs, and fasting throughout the day, in Mumbai, the festival is popularly celebrated as a Dahi Handi Utsav. On this day, govindas form a human pyramid to break the handi (earthen pot) filled with yogurt amidst chants of "Aala re aala! Govinda aala!"

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  • In photo: A child sleeps next to an artisan painting statues of Lord Krishna at a workshop in Chennai.

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  • Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Dahi Handi celebrations in Mumbai have been cancelled this year.

    In photo: A shopkeeper waits for customers as their sales have dropped during to the COVID-19 crisis.

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  • In photo: A family snapped on their way back home after buying peacock feathers for Gokulashtami.

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  • While this year, coronavirus casts a shadow over the festival, last year, Janmashtami was a low-key affair after the death of former finance minister Arun Jaitley and in the aftermath of floods in the state.

    In photo: A woman waits for customers to buy ropes for Dahi Handi celebrations.

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  • In photo: A vendor shows a Lord Krishna idol to customers on the eve of Krishna Janmashtami in Siliguri.

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  • In photo: A view of illuminated Gopal Mandir on the eve of Krishna Janmashtami in Amritsar.

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  • In photo: In 2019, revellers formed a human pyramid to break Dahi Handi in Dadar. Pic/Atul Kamble

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  • In photo: A throwback picture of last year's Dahi Handi celebrations in Mumbai.

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  • In photo: A group of govindas breaks the dahi handi in Dadar during last year's Dahi Handi celebrations in Mumbai. Pic/Atul Kamble

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  • In photo: A candid picture from last year's Dahi Handi celebrations in Mumbai shows all-girls group dancing after breaking dahi handi.

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About The Gallery

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, people across India geared up to celebrate Krishna Janmashtami, the birth of Lord Krishna. Though, temples were illuminated and people were seen shopping in the markets, the potters and idol makers said there are hardly any customers and they are struggling to eke out a living. Meanwhile, the ISKCON temple at Vrindavan has been sealed after 22 people, including the priest, tested positive for coronavirus.

(All photos/AFP and mid-day photographers)

First Published: 12 August, 2020 08:00 IST