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Sunday, May 29, 2011

Vaishno Devi Guffa Yatra in Houston

Richmond, TX: After a long 5 months effort by Ravi Shakar and Savita Puri, a spectacular event; Mata ki Chowki was organized on May 14 at the Richmond residence of Sachin and Radha Sharma.

The nine day long event was open to all and was attended by more than 150 people every day. The entire journey from Katra to Maa Vaishno Devi's Bhawan was recreated to give feeling of India, yet being thousands of miles away from it. They faced many obstacles , however by Mataji's blessings, those obstacles became a learning curve and they are proud to have presented this one of a kind experience in USA.

During the journey through "Guffa", devotess passed through Banganga, Charan paduka, Ardhkuwari, Vaishno-Dhaba, Sanjhi Chhat and Charan Ganga before entering the Bhawan. Lots of props were placed along the way to bring the feel of the actual yatra. At the end of the yatra, at Charan Ganga, devotees stepped in a small section of icy cold water.

Safety was their number one priority, while building the guffa. The entire yatra was made of wooden studs and PVC pipes and utmost care was taken to maintain structural integrity for safe passage through it. The Ardhkuwari (Garb June) was built to a level that was not too tight and carpet was placed underneath to accomodate people crawling through it. There was also a Bypass created for elderly and for those who decided not to crawl through the cave.

Many dedicated volunteers were present at different stages of the Guffa to help and guide devotees. "We were truely blessed that our vision came to life and was well appreciated by all Mata ke bhakt", Said Ravi Shakra Puri, the main organizer of the event.


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