"While Janmashtami in Dwarkadheesh Temple will be celebrated on August 17, in temples of Sri Krishna Janmashthan area, it will be celebrated on August 18. In temples of Vrindavan, Nandgaon and Goverdhan, it will be celebrated on August 18," Kapil Sharma, Secretary of Sri Krishna Janmasthan Seva Sansthan, said.
Priests attribute different religious practices as the reason for difference in the date of celebration. "Since on the night of August 17, 'astami of Bhadrapad' will be in full bloom, the 'abhishek' (bathing ceremony) will be done at midnight in Dwarkadheesh Temple," Govind Lal Chaturvedi Kirtania of the temple said.
Sharma said, "Since 'Udaya Tithi' is considered most auspicious, Janmashtami in most of the temples of Brijbhumi, especially Keshav Dev and Bhagwat Bhavan temples of Sri Krishna Janmsathan area, is celebrated on this day. This year, 'Udaya Tithi' falls on August 18 and so majority of temples will celebrate Janmashtami on this day."
Though Janmashtami in Radha Raman, Radha Damodar and Tedhe Khambewala temples in Vrindavan will be celebrated on August 18, it will be done during daytime.
"Since in these temples, child worship of Lord Krishna is common and waking a child at midnight is inconvenient for him, we celebrate Janmashtami during day time," Radha Raman Temple priest Acharya Dinesh Chandra Goswami said.
Since Janmashtami in Dwarkadheesh Temple, the main temple of Ballabhakul sect, will be celebrated on August 17, the festival will be celebrated in Gokul as Nandotsava the following day (August 18).
"It will be a Holi-type celebration in Gokul on August 18 when people drench each other in a mixture of curd and turmeric," Narayan Tewari, a social worker of Gokul, said.