New Delhi: Delhiites on Monday celebrated Janmashtami, which marks the birth of Lord Krishna.
Devotees prayed in the city`s decked-up temples in the morning. Though, the festivities will pick up during the evening and reach its peak at midnight when Lord Krishna is believed to have been born.
"I started my day with offering prayers in temple and I would be fasting the whole day," said Sneha Sharma, a 32-year-old banker who like others places a small Krishna idol in a cradle at home and bathed it with milk, curd, Ganga water, honey and ghee.
Temples, especially the popular ones like Birla Temple in central Delhi, Iskcon in south Delhi and Gouri Shankar temple in old Delhi were adorned with flowers and colourful lights as people came to pray to Krishna and his consort Radha.
While elaborate tableaux depicting Krishna`s birth enthralled the devotees at many temples, children with flutes in hand and a peacock feather stuck on their headbands, depicting Lord Krishna are a common sight at cultural events in residential societies and temples.
"Some devotees prayed in the morning but the celebrations will begin only in the evening and reach its peak at midnight when the mahabhishekha (pouring a mixture of water and milk over the deity) is done," Ravindra Nagar, head priest of Birla Temple, told a news agency.
"Panjiri" and "panchamrit" - two milk-based delicacies - with fruit are the common "prasadam".
People will sing "bhajans" (devotional songs) and chant "mantras" in all the temples throughout the day.