India Post will Release Stamp on Devnarayan Today

By Anurag

India Post will today release a commemorative stamp of Bhagwan Devnarayan.Afunction\"\" will be organized at Asind in Bhilwara distt of Rajasthan.Shri Devnarayan , an ancient Gurjar  warrior from Rajasthan  who is believed to have been an incarnation of Lord Vishnu , is worshipped as a folk deity, mostly in Rajasthan  and north-western Madhya Pradesh  . According to tradition, he was born to Sri Savai Bhoj and Sadu mata Gurjari  on the seventh day of the bright half (shukla saptami) of the month of Magh in the Hindu Calendar in Vikram Samvat  968 (911 AD). The epic of Devnarayan is one of the longest and most popular religious oral narratives of Rajasthan.  The epic of Devnarayan has been classified under the category of martial epics. The principal shrine of Devnaryan is located at Sawai Bhoj near Asind  town, the battlefield of Bagravat Bharat. Other significant shrines are at Demali, which is believed as the earliest shrine founded by Devnarayan himself and Malasari, where Devnarayan was born. Devnarayan is worshipped in these shrines in the form of an upright row of large sized bricks. The bricks are often kept bare, but sometimes the multi-colored tinsel is pasted over them.Another significant shrine of Devnarayan is located at Jodhpuriya  near Mashi dam in Tonk district . Two fairs are organized each year near this shrine.

\"\"\"\"Earlier India Post released a stamp on Phad of Devnarayan in 1992.This scroll,Devnarayan phad, is used as a mobile temple and the Bhopas carry it with them. The Joshi families of Bhilwara and Shahpura  are the traditional artists of the Devnarayan phads. A phadconsists of an image of Devnarayan in the attire of a king seated on his \”python\” throne in his court faced by the serpent king Basak and his four cousins at the centre. The whole phadis painted with various scenes related to the narrative of Devnarayan according to a traditional scheme. No place is left vaccant. These phads are normally about 30 feet in length. One of the earliest surviving Devnarayan phad is in the collection of Rupayan Sansthan, the Rajasthan Institute of Floklore in Jodhpur. This phad is signed by Surajmal and Bagtavarchand and dated Vikram Samvat 1924 (1867). A Bhopa, usually erects the phad shortly after nightfall in the villages where he is invited to sing different episodes from the epical narrative of Devnarayan in front of the phad during thejagarans (night-wakes).

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