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Sunshine of Lord Jagannatha Dispels the Clouds of Covid in Twin European Cities: London and Paris


London and Paris have a lot in widespread so far as Krishna Consciousness is involved. Srila Prabhupada visited each cities many occasions.

He put in Radha Krishna Deities in each locations and gave Them related names…Radha-London Isvara (London) Radha-Paris Isvara (Paris). He additionally put in Jagannatha, Baladeva, Subhadra, and Gaura Nitai in each cities.

London Rathayatra 2021

Rathayatras in each locations appeal to 1000’s every year, round 20,000 individuals in London (since 1969) and round 5,000 individuals in Paris (since 1982).

These twin cities additionally share one of many luxurious Rathayatra chariots, constructed and pushed by Titikshu das, who recollects the historic background under:

“I labored with Mayesvara Prabhu, from the US, on the 1982 London chariot which was additionally used the identical 12 months in Paris.  Mayesvara Prabhu was on Jayananda Prabhu’s staff which constructed the 1976 New York chariots. Jayananda Prabhu had advised him his thought was to have chariots that would in a short time be disassembled and transported, so many cities might have Rathayatra. The London 1982 chariot was constructed like this with sliding sections and could be compacted and loaded onto a flatbed truck in 75 minutes. The intention of the GBC for southern Europe at the moment was that it could possibly be used all through the zone. The first Paris Rathayatra was in 1982 with this chariot, and Madrid was in 1984. In 2004, two extra chariots had been in-built London”.

In 1995 Titiksu das was approached by the french Rathayatra organisers, Advaita Chandra das (who left his physique on December twenty fourth, 2019) and Nitai Gaurasundar das, then Paris Temple president. They invited Titiksu to come back with one of many three UK chariots, for parading Lord Jagannatha within the streets of Paris. Then for 25 years, this UK chariot was used within the Paris Festival.


Paris Rathayatra 2021

In phrases of time administration and organisation, the London Rathayatra has been scheduled every year (till 2019) 2 or 3 weeks earlier than the Paris one. In between, Titiksu would go to Budapest, and typically Prague. But the Covid-19 pandemic introduced a cease to this European Tour of the UK chariot, as all massive occasions had been canceled in 2020.

Lord Jagannatha’s devotees then skilled an enormous feeling of separation, and the stress got here on the English and French organisers, to not miss the alternative to organise the 2021 parade all through the streets of each metropolis’s capitals, in between two waves of the world pandemics.

Applications had been made in each locations for August 2021, and a way or different had been granted for August eighth in London, and August twenty eighth in Paris. As scheduled London Rathayatra came about from Hyde Park to Trafalgar Square.

Titiksu dasa: “In London this 12 months Lord Jagannatha performed a trick to get the permission. When giving us the date, He brought on the girl on the Trafalgar Square authority to overlook that there was a everlasting exhibition on the one a part of the sq. we might put three chariots. We ought to by no means have been supplied that date. They didn’t know we might put all of the Deities on one
chariot and use a unique a part of the sq.. When I urged this they readily agreed”.

Although London and Paris could possibly be seen as twin non secular cities as a result of of Srila Prabhupada’s mercy, the fabric world’s organisation doesn’t at all times comply with the imaginative and prescient of the pure acharya. As such, on the highest of the worst pandemic the world has ever recognized, 2021 was additionally the primary 12 months for the UK to exit Europe, and this additionally had penalties on the Rathayatra organisation. For the primary time after 25 years, Titiksu was unable to come back to Paris together with his truck, on account of customs issues, and obligatory quarantine for his co-driver.

The French Rathayatra organisers needed to discover an alternate chariot and lastly obtained the one from Benelux conceived by Hrday Chaitanya das and constructed by bhakta Peter. Peter himself introduced it to Paris and glued it up with Kapila Muni das on august twenty eighth on Place de la Chapelle, within the Little India space of Paris. Three ambassadors (from India, Nepal, and Mauritius) got here for the inauguration of the pageant, providing a basket of fruits and lamps to Their Lordships, and broke the coconuts to open the route,
ensuring to brush the highway in entrance of Jagannatha. A crowd of 2000 pulled the chariot for two hours within the streets of Paris, lastly arriving on Place de la Republique, the place they had been served take away prasadam on this stunning sunny Saturday afternoon.


(Right to left) HH Janananda Swami, a consular minister from Nepal, Ambassador of India in France, Mr. Jawed Ashraf,  Ambassador of the Republic of Mauritius in France, Vijayen Valaydon, and Mrs. Kamala Devi Valaydon, Gauda Mandala das, ISKCON Paris Temple President, Nitai Gaurasundar Das, Rathayatra Coordinator

It can also be essential to notice that as a strong preaching alternative, Rathayatra brings auspiciousness to the French yatra. Scheduled this 12 months 2021 in a sandwich proper after the Balaram pageant of New Mayapur (on August twenty second) and the Krishna Janmastami pageant (on August thirtieth), the pageant (on August twenty eighth) introduced collectively for in the future the French sankirtan distributors in Paris. Not solely did they distribute an excellent variety of books on that day, however succeeded, beneath the inspiration of HH Janananda Gosvami to make the month of August all collectively their finest month of the 12 months within the world world sankirtan outcomes. From a complete of 1327 guide factors in January, France went as much as 3175 in August 2021, a humble strategy to present its gratitude to ISKCON’s founder-acharya Srila Prabhupada, who positioned his worshipable lotus ft for the primary time in Paris precisely 50 years in the past, on June twenty fifth, 1971. 

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