While most people in India celebrate Guru Purnima (27th July) as a one day festival, there is a week long celebration in Braj at this time called Mudiya Mela. In anticipation of the crowds, state Roadways has announced that 1500 extra buses will service the area and the Radha Kund Railway Station will become operational before the Mela.
Previously, people who arrived by train all departed from Govardhan station, so, those who wanted to start parikrama from Radha Kund, had to catch a tempo for 2.5 km from Govardhan station to Radha Kund. Now people will be able to exit from a newly build station at Radha Kund.
Govardhan train station
Roadways Assistant Regional Manager Akshay Kumar says that the administration has asked for 1500 buses for the fair. The extra buses will run from Agra, Aligarh, Etawah, Ghaziabad, Moradabad, Bareilly and Meerut.
U.P. Roadways buses at Govardhan bus station
While every Hindu festival is celebrated with great pomp and fanfare in Braj’s temples, Guru Purnima is a particularly big festival here. Many ashrams and temples have been built by Gurus after they gathered a following in their home region, and many of Braj’s local gurus become popular around the country. In the lead up to Guru Purnima, people flock to Braj to see their guru to offer their respects and daksina (gifts).
Devotees listening to Bhagavat Katha
The biggest crowds will go to Govardhan, but Vrindavan streets are also transformed, with pandals appearing on every street corner as temples make arrangements for hundreds of devotees who come to hear Bhagavat Katha.
Guru Purnima also marks the disappearance day of Sanatan Goswami. In Braj, the festival is called Mudiya Purnima because, after Sanatan Goswami left his physical body, Vaishnavas shaved their heads and did Govardhan parikrama.
On the eve of Mudiya Purnima, abhishek is held at Madhan Mohan temple and devotees pay tribute at Sanatan Goswami’s Samadhi, adjacent to the temple.
Sanatan Goswami’s samadhi at the Madan Mohan temple