Attired in their colourful best with some kids dressed up as Lord Krishna, dozens of Kashmiri Pandits on Saturday took out a procession here to celebrate ‘Janamashtami.’ Amid religious chants in praise of Lord Krishna, the procession began from a temple at Barbarshah locality and passed through the city’s nerve centre Lal Chowk before concluding at the place of its origin. Janmashtami procession has become a regular feature since 2004, when it was held for the first time after a gap of over 15 years. The Janmashtami processions used to be taken out by Pandits with much pomp and show before their migration in early ’90s. The Kashmiri Pandits living in the Valley thronged various temples since this morning and participated in ‘Puja Archana, Bhajan Keertan and Prasad Vitaran’ before joining the march. The march attracted the attention of the majority community who cheered the participants and even joined the dancing troupe to send a symbolic message that Kashmiris are united and cannot be divided on communal lines. “The procession is an open invitation to the migrant brethren to return to their homeland,” one of the devotees said.
2015 Kashmir Despatch