Braj, 2019.07.13 (VT): The crowds that have been coming to Govardhan for hundreds of years to observe the disappearance day of Shri Sanatan Goswami are in for a shock this year as authorities have announced that dandauti Parikrama will not be permitted due to the large crowds.
Citing safety reasons, district administration has banned the practice during the festival. It is expected that over the 5 days of the mela, 8 million people will do parikrama. District Magistrate Sarvagyaram Mishra said that dandavat Parikrama is possible at other times of the year. He appealed to devotees to conduct Parikrama peacefully and with devotion, adding that dandavati Parikrama has previously been banned on high traffic days.
A lunar eclipse on the night of the 16th may also deter some of the millions who planned to do Parikrama during the night to avoid the heat and temple goers are also in for a shock as temples including Vrindavan’s Radharaman temple will close after 4.30pm.
Banke Bihari temple will close even earlier, at 3.50pm after the Shayan aarti at 3.45. All the services have been shifted to an earlier time, with the temple opening at 7.45, then closing between 11am and 12.40.
The Mudiya Purnima fair started from 12th. There have been increased crowds in Vrindavan since Ekadasi, with many the opportunity of the beginning of the Chaturmas period yesterday to do Vrindavan Parikrama.
The blazing sun has cooled as the first monsoon rains came in the second week of July, and so far, the days have been fine, which is a blessing because rain during the mela period causes increased traffic issues, like the flooding of temporary parking lots in the fields surrounding Govardhan.
The good weather is also a bonus for the operators of the joy flights being promoted as ‘Heli Parikrama’ by the UP Government. For the sum of Rs3000 people can circumaviate Govardhan in 10 minutes.
Despite the inevitable lack of a peaceful atmosphere, seeing so many people doing Parikrama together is inspiring to see. Sanatan Goswami was the elder among the Six Goswamis who inspired by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu to reignite the worship of Radha Krishna in Braj. His renunciation and dedication garnered him the admiration of locals of all sampradayas. Since his disappearance day in 1558, the Mudiya Mela has been growing every year.