The world’s highest Krishna temple is seated at an elevation of 12,778 feet in the middle of the picturesque Yula Kanda lake hidden deep in the Rora Valley of Kinnaur and surrounded by the majestic snow-capped Himalayas. One has to travel from Tapri towards Yula and walk 12 kms from Yula to reach this ancient and relatively unknown temple.
Legend has it that this sacred lake was created by the Pandavas during their exile. The temple dedicated to Lord Krishna was built in the middle of this lake by the Pandavas. Locals say that this temple is open to all irrespective of their faith.
The festivities of Janmashtami are associated with the princely state of Bushahr. The then ruling king, Raja Kehari Singh started the tradition of celebrating Janmashtami in this unique temple. On the day of Janmashtami, all the locals as well as the devotees who have come from far-flung places to seek blessings of Lord Krishna distribute Brahma Kamal along with eighteen varieties and colours of flowers in the morning. The customary rites and rituals are performed after which all the devotees partake the prasad.
There is a holy stream that flows near the summit of the temple where caps decide one’s fate! Locals say that one should turn their Kinnauri cap upside down and set it afloat on this flowing stream. If the cap reaches the other end, then it means that your prayers have been answered and good fortune awaits you. On the other hand, if the cap goes into the water, then it means that there are troubled times ahead in the year. People from Kinnaur as well as Shimla and other parts of Himachal Pradesh come to this sacrosanct place to place their cap in the hope that their prayers will be answered by Lord Krishna.
There is a massive field which has medicinal and healing properties located at some distance from the temple in the north-east direction. It is said that if one walks barefoot on this ground, then one can experience hotness in some places and coldness in others and this is said to completely cure all diseases. Legend has it that the Pandavas had cultivated paddy in this land during their exile and some remnants are seen.
Locals also say that it is imperative to circumambulate this divine lake as it will absolve one of all their sins. One receives blessings of peace and bliss from Lord Krishna who is seated in this breathtaking wonderous Rora Valley.
This spectacular place remains closed for most of the year. Locals say that pilgrims offer their prayers in this temple before proceeding to Kinner Kailash.
Written by Lakshmi Subramanian
* Photos are only symbolic (Taken from public domain/internet and any copyright infringement is unintentional and regrettable)