Streets of cities, towns and even remote villages of Kerala turned into Madhura, the birth place of Sree Krishna on August 18, 2022, thanks to the Janmashtami celebrations led by Balagokulam, the largest children’s movement in the entire world. Shobhayathras of children in the attire of Sree Krishna, Radhika, Balaram, Vasudev, Yeshodha, Arjun, Bhima and several heroes and heroines Bharatiya epics are the highlights of Janmashtami celebrations. Even “baby Krishnas” participate in them as they are carried by their mothers. Mothers of children and native men take it as their privilege to take part in Shobhayathras. A state office bearer of Balagokulam told this correspondent that more than 7,000 Shobhayathras have taken place throughout Kerala. Therefore, more than two lakhs of people including children dressed up as epic heroes might have participated in those Shobhayathras.
Balagokulam is the cultural movement founded more than half a century ago. It is one of the several RSS-inspired organisations in the state. Weekly cultural class, the major activity of the organization, materialize the dream of informal education. Janmashtami Shobhayathra is the part and parcel of Balagokulam; it is the programme which reaches the general public cutting across class-caste-religious-political differences. Even though Kerala is the epic centre of Balagokulam it is active ad in all major cities of Bharat with reasonable presence of the Keralites and throughout the world except for communist countries (China, North Korea and Cuba) and countries with stringent religious restrictions. Shobhayathras take place in those places on Janmashtami day and weekly classes taking place regularly.