Jeddah: The safety protocol following Covid-19 has ushered in a new era of digital poojas during festivals among Gulf NRIs. The pooja rituals during festivals have been an integral part of NRIs’ celebrations abroad.
The latest festival of Varalaxmi Vratam saw Telugu women in many Gulf countries taking to digital format with enthusiasm. Most of them went live with their pooja in their personal family groups on social media platforms.
Varalakshmi Vratam is observed by married women for their husbands and family. There is a dedicated procedure observed by the women who perform the pooja which takes place on the second Friday of Sravana Masam. Women from Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and other parts of the country participate in the rituals.
NRI Telugu women in Kuwait with the support of Telugu Kala Samithi (TKS) celebrated Varalaxmi Vratam ritual on Friday with zeal and enthusiasm.
“The pandemic did not dampen the spirit of the pooja, as we followed all precautionary measures and health protocols while performing Varalaxmi Vratam with more enthusiasm than in the pre-Covid times,” said G.S. Srivatsa Madhabushi, of Hyderabad who works in Kuwait.
“We used to visit family and friends to exchange Tambulam during this time every year but due to Covid-19, we could not do that this ear. The digital mode of pooja, however, not only filled the vacuum but increased our enthusiasm” opined Swamy Rajani, native of Kodada in Suryapet district.
Conducting various events in virtual mode has become common nowadays but pooja rituals with such massive response was impressive, says Jyotsna Kishore, a prominent Telugu woman activist in Kuwait.
“The digital mode platform has really made us feel that we invited other couples to our homes”, said Jyoti Subramaniam of Kurnool. The similar views were echoed by Laxmi Panyala, native of Hyderabad who lives in Dubai.
Similar rituals were conducted in Sharjah, Dubai, Muscat and Doha by Telugu NRI women.
Devotional activities flourishing in digital platforms even pre pandemic, in post pandemic it has witnessed a significant increase.
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