Srinagar, May 27: Former J&K chief minister and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) President, Mehbooba Mufti on Saturday extended her heartfelt greetings and best wishes to the people of Jammu and Kashmir, especially the Kashmiri Pandit community, on the auspicious and joyous occasion of Mela Kheer Bhawani.
Mela Kheer Bhawani, also known as the festival of Mata Ragnya Devi, holds immense significance in the rich cultural fabric of Jammu and Kashmir, she said, in a statement.
“This annual festival, celebrated with great fervor, exemplifies the bonhomie and harmonious coexistence between the Kashmiri Pandits and Kashmiri Muslims, transcending religious boundaries and fostering communal harmony,” said Mehbooba.
The history of Mela Kheer Bhawani dates back to centuries, symbolizing the reverence and devotion of the people towards the divine Mother Ragnya Devi, she said. The sacred shrine of Mata Ragnya Devi, nestled amidst the picturesque environs of Tula Mula village in Ganderbal district, becomes the epicenter of this grand celebration. Devotees from all walks of life, irrespective of their faith, gather at this holy site to seek blessings and pay homage to the revered goddess.
“Mela Kheer Bhawani represents a unique amalgamation of spirituality, culture, and communal harmony. It provides a platform for Kashmiri Pandits and Kashmiri Muslims to come together, exchange greetings, and share their rich traditions and customs. The festival epitomizes the syncretic ethos of Jammu and Kashmir, where people from diverse backgrounds coexist harmoniously, united by their shared love for this land.”
On the occasion, Mehbooba highlighted the significance of preserving and promoting the age-old cultural heritage of Jammu and Kashmir. She emphasized the need for safeguarding religious plurality and fostering an environment where all communities can thrive with mutual respect and understanding.
Mehbooba urged the administration to ensure smooth conduct of Mela Kheer Bhawani, with adequate arrangements for the comfort and safety of the devotees. She called upon the people of Jammu and Kashmir to actively participate in the festivities, embracing the spirit of inclusivity and brotherhood that this festival encapsulates.
“The People's Democratic Party takes this opportunity to extend its warmest greetings to all the devotees, and especially to the Kashmiri Pandit and Kashmiri Muslim communities, on the occasion of Mela Kheer Bhawani. May this festival reinforce the bonds of unity and harmony, fostering a brighter future for Jammu and Kashmir,” added the statement.