Krishna Janmashtami is the annual celebration of the birth of Lord Krishna, who was the eighth avatar of Lord Vishnu. The festival is also known as Krishnashtami, Saatam Aatham, Gokulashtami, Ashtami Rohini, Srikrishna Jayanti or Sree Jayanti.
Janmashtami is celebrated every year on the eighth day (Ashtami) of the Krishna Paksha (dark fortnight) in the Shravana (August–September) month, according to the Hindu calendar. People stay up at night fasting and perform special prayers at midnight since that was the time Krishna was believed to have been born.
Rasa Lila is performed across India, especially Mathura and Vrindavan, which is considered the birthplace of Krishna. Rasa Lila is the dramatic enactment of Krishna’s life. Every year, performances re-create the flirtatious side of Krishna in his youth.
The traditional Dahi Handi is also held across India and celebrates Krishna’s playful and mischievous side. Teams of young men form human towers to reach a pot of curd tied to a rope and hung at a particular height and break it.
Janmashtami is followed by Nandotsav, a festival that celebrates the occasion when Nanda Baba distributed gifts to the community in honour of Krishna’s birth.
A number of schools organise different types of events like puppet shows, fancy dress competitions and drama on the deity’s life. Children dress up as Krishna and perform plays and skits.
Many schools also organize a function for the Dahi Handi festival for students to form human pyramids and break the pot of curd.
On the festival of Krishna Janmashtami, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday greeted the nation.
“Janmashtami greetings to all,” Prime Minister Modi tweeted.