As many as 18,000 Kashmiri Pandits and other devotees paid obeisance at Mata Kheer Bhavani temple near Srinagar in Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday on the occasion of Jyeshtha Ashtami.
The Mata Kheer Bhavani temple is considered to be the deity of Kashmiri Pandits and Jyeshtha Ashtami holds immense religious significance for the community, an official statement said. On the auspicious occasion, around 18,000 Kashmiri Pandits and devotees visited the famous Mata Kheer Bhavani temple, the statement said.
Every year, on this day, Kheer Bhavani Mela is organised at Mata Kheer Bhavani Temple in Tulmulla, Ganderbal and devotees from different parts of Jammu and Kashmir visit the holy shrine.
The temple is located about 20 km from Srinagar.
Over the years, the Kheer Bhawani Mela has become a symbol of communal harmony and brotherhood in Kashmir. Elaborate security arrangements were made for this event and it was monitored by the Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, the statement said.
Around 2,500 Kashmiri Pandit devotees participated in the evening aarti.
The religious sanctity of Mata Kheer Bhavani temple, built atop a holy spring, has a special spiritual significance among Kashmiri Pandit devotees across the world.
The event could not be held here due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and 2021.
A free bus service was run from Srinagar Airport, Tourist Reception Centre, Dal Lake Side Nehru Park, Shankaracharya Temple, Shivpora, Bibi Cantt, Indira Nagar, and other areas where Hindu communities live in large numbers.
Full attention was given to ensure that devotees did not face any kind of problem, the statement said, adding parking facility and mobile urinals were also provided near the temple.
Several NGOs and civil society had also made arrangements to provide wheel chairs and other aids for the convenience of the devotees at the fair.
Special health check-up stalls were also set up by the Health Department, during which many devotees took consultations.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also greeted Kashmiri Pandits on the occasion of Jyeshtha Ashtami.
The Prime Minister in his tweet said, “Happy Jyeshtha Ashtami to all, especially Kashmiri Pandit sisters and brothers. We pray to Mata Kheer Bhavani for everyones well-being and prosperity.” Union Home Minister Amit Shah also congratulated the Kashmiri Pandits on Jyeshtha Ashtami and said that it is a special festival of worshiping Maa Kheer Bhavani.
On this holy festival, I extend warm greetings to all Kashmiri Pandit brothers and sisters and pray for the progress and prosperity of the country by bowing at the feet of Maa Kheer Bhavani, the statement said.
On the occasion, LG Sinha extended his warm greetings to the Kashmiri Pandit community.
He said this auspicious occasion is a celebration of religious life, love, compassion and harmony. Let us pray to Mata Kheer Bhavani to guide us on the path of righteousness and bring peace, happiness and prosperity to our land.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Federal staff and is auto-published from a syndicated feed.)