World ? Asia ? India ? Mumbai

Krishna Janmashtami (Krishna's Birthday)

14 Aug 2009 (annual)
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Mumbai celebrates Krishna Janmashtami, or Krishna's Birthday, in an unusual fashion. Enthusiastic residents string pots of curd and butter between buildings and the brave form human pyramids to get at them, so mimicking Krishna's (one of the cheekier gods) exploits.
Lord Krishna, an incarnation of the Hindu God Vishnu, combines light-hearted mischief with omnipotence. His childhood was spent flirting with milkmaids and stealing butter kept beyond his reach by his parents.

The pots are hung on ropes spanning buildings at a height of up to five storeys. Generous amounts of money are attached next to the pots as an incentive to roving bands of yoghurt-stealers. As heavy showers are frequent at this time of year, and buckets of water tend to get thrown around, the job of constructing multi-tiered human pyramids for Krishna Janmashtami is made even more difficult.

A few broken bones are par for the course, but fatalities are rare. As you can imagine, the day of Krishna Janmashtami provides an incredible spectacle for any Mumbai tourist.
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