Dwarkadhish temple decorated for massive Janmashtami celebrations

August 23rd, 2008 - 7:41 pm ICT by IANS  

Jamnagar (Gujarat), Aug 23 (IANS) The famed 16th century Dwarkadhish (Lord of Dwarka) temple here is all decked up to celebrate the 5,235th birth anniversary of Lord Krishna Sunday.Dwarka in Jamnagar district is a famous yatra dham (pilgrimage site) for Hindus all over the world. It is one of the four main dhams. Over 100,000 pilgrims come here every year.

The Dwarka Devasthan Committee has made all arrangements for the Janmashtami festivity. More than 550 security personnel from the police and other state forces are on duty. For information a centre has been opened near the main temple. Similar centres have been opened in other places in Dwarka town.

Primary health centres have been set up for those who may need medical help. Various private institutions are providing free meals and fruits are being sold at reduced rates on a no-profit no-loss basis. Accommodation facilities have been spruced up. Extra buses are being run for the occasion.

The grand celebrations of Lord Dwarkadhish is being telecast live. The temple, situated 150 km from here and 465 km from Ahmedabad, has started its own website www.dwarkadhish.org which can be accessed on Aug 24 night from 11.30 p.m. to 12.30 a.m. to see the festivities live.

Millions in the country can have darshan online. What is more interesting is that the whole sequence of events can be seen on the temple website for a month after the ceremonies are over.

The event is also telecast live by private channels like Aajtak, Zee Gujarati, ETV Gujarati, TV9 Gujarat and Doordarshan and All India Radio.

On Sunday, the temple opens from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. (it will remain closed from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.); open again at 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. and close from 9 p.m. to 12 a.m. for decoration. At sharp 12 a.m. darshan and festivities related to the birth ceremony of Lord Krishna will begin and go on till 2.30 a.m.

The Dwarkadhish Temple, built in the 16th century, stands on 72 pillars. The temple spire is 78.3 m (235 feet) high. From the temple dome, an 84 foot long multi-coloured flag decorated with the symbols of the sun and moon gently flutters in the breeze.

Lord Krishna’s grandson Vajranabha is said to have built the original temple of Dwarkadhish over the hari-graha (Lord Krishna’s residential place). The sanctum of the temple is formed by the Jagat Mandir or Nija Mandir which dates back at least 2,500 years. The Jagat Mandir has a tall tower and a hall of audience and comprises five floors.

The main deity is Lord Dwarkadhish, who represents the four-armed form of Vishnu called Trivikrama. There is a temple of Lord Baladevaji (Balarama) to the right of the main deity. The temple to the left is Pradyumna and a small deity of Aniruddha. They are the son and grandson of Lord Krishna. Behind the main temple in the eastern part of the temple compound are shrines of Radhikaji, Jambuvatiji, Satyabhamaji and Lakshmiji. There are also shrines of Saraswati and Lakshmi-Narayan.

A cultural programme too has been arranged near the temple at night, and thanks to the Reliance`s group president (corporate affairs) Parimalbhai Nathwani the Jagat temple will be fully decked in incandescent and colourful lights. Nathwani is also the Dwarka Devasthan Committee`s vice-president.

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