Gokul 2016.08.23 (VT): Gokul is getting ready to celebrate Janmashtami, the biggest festival of the year. Simultaneously, the Yamuna is rising to touch the feet of her dearest Lord Krishna. Lakhs of devotees have already started visiting the village to experience this miracle during Shri Krishna Janmotsav.
Gokul is the place where Lord Krishna came right after taking birth in the jail of his uncle Kamsa. The sacred place is now getting ready for the three-day celebration which will start after the “chathi poojan” on Aug 24. Devotees have already started thronging the place to get the blessings of Lord Krishna by swinging his swing.
Every year at this time, the sacred Yamuna River rises as far as Nand Bhavan in Gokul to touch the feet of Lord Krishna. She advances as far as the gates of Nand Bhavan and then goes back after navami, which will be Aug 27 this year.
Kanha’s Gokul sadly neglected
Gokul is the place where Lord Krishna lived for 11 years and 52 days. The place is associated with the pastimes of Lord while he knocked down many demons. This is the place where he stayed and did cowherding for years, but this sacred place if now losing its value as residents are migrating in search of jobs and better opportunities.
Gokul is almost 10 kilometres from Mathura and has a population of around 5,000. This place full of pastimes of little Krishna is becoming empty now as many families migrate to bigger cities for job opportunities.
The village is old and has narrow lanes and old styled houses, but many of them are now permanently locked. A 65 years old local from Gokul, Babulal Pujari said that he has seen around 100 families migrating from here in the past couple of years.
Gokul also lacks in basic infrastructure. There is only one hospital which is mostly empty as no doctor is permanently on duty there. People have to walk for almost a kilometer to get public conveyances. The population of cows is also decreasing day by day as people don’t keep them anymore.
Squalor can be seen at every corner of the town with no one to take responsibility to clean it. The Mathura district city administration doesn’t even bother to put sign boards to guide visitors to the tourist centers. The road leading to Nand Bhavan is also damaged due to negligence from the city administration.
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