Amidst chanting of hymns by sants, blowing of conches and beating of drums, the Gujarati community here on Sunday celebrated the annual ‘Annakut Utsav' with devotion by offering around 500 food items as “naivedyam” to Lord Swaminarayan here on Sunday.
Piety engulfed the BAPS (Bochasanwasi Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayansanstha) Swaminarayana temple at Indira Towers adjacent to St. Anns Hospital on M.G. Road, as disciples of Pramuk Swaminarayana Maharaj narrated the significance of the festival to the hundreds of Gujaratis, who attended the rituals with their families.
“Our temple is a branch of the “Akshardham Temple” at New Delhi. This festival is celebrated soon after Deepavali, which marks the New Year for us. The entire business community begins its new accounts by opening new books,” said Jagadh Bhai Seth, president of Gujarati Samaj. Mr. Seth said ‘Annakut' meant a huge mountain of food which consisted of fruits, salads, pulses and juices. “This together is offered to the almighty and then distributed as ‘prasadam' among all the devotees. This puja in India is also popularly known as Govardhan puja and depicts the lifting of the Govardhan Mountain by Lord Krishna,” he explained.
Samaj secretary Naveen Bhai Patel said that the responsibility of cooking the food items was given to six families. “A lot of care and attention was paid in preparing the dishes. Along with sweets and savouries, we also offered over 15 varieties of fruits, dozens of mouth fresheners and fruits juices to the almighty,” he added. Some of the items were Kaju Katli, Julab Jamun, Rosagullah, Chevla, Khakra, Chavanu and Chakri.
“The festival is celebrated in a grand manner at Swaminarayan Temple at Ahmedabad. As many as 2,550 food items are offered to the almighty,” said Mr. Narayana of Sriji Laminations on Karl Marx Road. He said there were around 130 Gujarati families residing in Vijayawada and the Lord Swaminarayana temple was constructed on 1994.
Keywords: Annakut Utsav