Visa Balaji temple throws Raksha Bandhan Challenge

Visa Balaji temple throws Raksha Bandhan Challenge

Chilkur Balaji temple in Hyderabad.

The famous Balaji temple in Chilkur in Hyderabad known as Visa Balaji temple has thrown a “Raksha Bandhan” challenge to young men that flock the temple mostly seeking a visa to enter the USA. The challenge is to accept a Rakhi from any unknown female devotee at the temple premises on August 26.

“Chilkur temple often responds to contemporary social issues. Now, this is our response to the concerns expressed over the safety of girls in the country in the wake of recent Thomson Reuters Foundation survey”, Chief Priest of the temple CS Rangarajan said. The effort is to sensitize young boys on the need to behave like brothers with girls around them, he said.

A large number of Rakhis will be kept at the temple on Raksha Bandhan day to enable women devotees to pick up and tie to any man they come across in the temple. The idea is to tell the boys and young men not to look at girls as a thing of enjoyment but as sisters. Priests at the temple believe that tying a Rakhi would create a ‘sense of true brother’ among boys, regardless of blood relationship.

Explaining the need for Rakhi Challenge in these days of several kinds of challenges, Rangarajan said that what girls need at this hour is not valentines but brothers. “ Our initiative aims at restoring that affection in calling one Anna (big brother) and Chellemma (younger sister) which will automatically bring protection to the girls”, says Rangarajan.

On 26 August all the male devotees coming to the temple will first be explained about the significance of the day with a fair dose of examples from Mahabharata. “Worshipping Subhadra and Lord Krishna (sister and brother) in Jagannath Rath Yatra in Puri (Odisha) signifies the relation between brother and sister unlike other Hindu temples,” the Chief Priest said.