Monday, August 17, 2009

The Shri Shyam Bhajan, a Hindu religious festival, was organised on August 15th in Hyderabad, India. This was the city’s annual function, which was coincidentally celebrated a day after Krishna Janmashtami, and on the occasion of Independence Day at the Nampally Exhibition Ground.

About 125,000 lamps were lit along the campus boundaries as evening fell. About 25,000 people participated at the event, and the program was broadcast live on Aastha TV.

Baba Shyam’s Durbar, the arena where idols of deity are situated, was very well-decorated. Four alternative colors, green, yellow, pink and blue were used to lighten up the shringar.

The program started at 8:30 p.m. local time (15.00 UTC). Famous singers across the country presented bhajans, or devotional songs, to Shri Shyam’s feet. Singer Sanju Sharma started the evening, followed by Jai Shankar Choudhary. Then, Lakkha Singh took the lead in singing the bhajans. 108 plates of Chhappan Bhog (in Hinduism, 56 different edible items, like, sweets, fruits, nuts, dishes etc. which are offered to deity) were served to Baba Shyam. Lakkha Singh presented the chhappan bhog bhajan as well. Singer, Raju Khandelwal was accompanying him.

Baba Shyam’s great devotee-cum-singer Nanduji came to present several of his creations to Shri Shyam. He was feeling tired, after having two long bhajan sessions — each three hours long — at different locations within the past day. 62-year old Nanduji has continuously served Baba Shyam for last 26 years.

The program was completed by Miss Arora, followed by Sanjay Mittal and Sanjay Kapoor. All singers were honoured with dupatta — a sacred piece of cloth worn across both shoulders — at the start of their performances, and a photo frame of Shri Krishna, as a memento at the end of their performances. Then, Baba’s aarti (a special song sung in praise of the deity) was performed as the closing ceremony.