(Last Updated on : 20/07/2011)
Gokul, located in the district of Mathura
, Uttar Pradesh is a small town associated with the early years of Lord Krishna
. Gokul is a Nagar Panchayat. It is believed that Lord Krishna was brought up here in secrecy by his foster parents, Yashoda
and Nand Maharaj. Gokul is a renowned pilgrimage area and there are numerous religious places here. The most striking and outstanding monument in Gokul is Chaurasi Khamba or 84 Pillars, also renowned as Nand Maharaj's residence. Most of the places are linked with the legends of Krishna.
Legends and history of Gokul
According to legends, Lord Krishna was raised in Gokul upto the age of seven. It is believed that Nand Maharaj and Yashoda, foster parents of Krishna, raised Krishna in Gokul, hidden away from the knowledge of his evil maternal uncle, Emperor Kansa
. Lord Krishna spent his adolescence and childhood in Gokul. Although Kansa attempted to harm Krishna, but he spent his time here in amusement and frolic. The residence of Nand Maharaj, built by Visvakarma, almost 5000 years earlier, is still visible on a hill. The construction consists of 84 pillars.
Gokul is also popular for several mystical acts of Krishna. Krishna conquered and subdued many demons in Gokul that were sent by Kansa, like Putana
, Sakatasura, Trinavarta and demon serpent Kalia. It is also said that Krishna met his love Radha in Gokul.
Geography of Gokul
Gokul is situated in Mathura district in the state of Uttar Pradesh. The geographical coordinates are 27.45 degrees north, 77.72 degrees east. Gokul is almost 15 km away from Mathura in the south-east direction and is also near Agra
. Gokul has an estimated elevation of 534 feet (163 m).
Demography of Gokul
According to the 2001 Census, the population of Gokul is 4041, of which, 55% are males and 45% of the population are females. The average literacy rate is higher than the average national rate of 59.5%. The literacy rate of Gokul is 60%; literacy rate in males is 68%, where as female literacy rate is 49%. 18% of the entire population in Gokul consists of young children below 6 years.
Culture of Gokul
The culture of Gokul is highly influenced by the legends of Lord Krishna. Various popular festivals are celebrated here like Trinvat Mela, Annakut and Janmashtmi. In Raman Reti, is a very popular tradition where people roll on the ground, asking for blessings from Krishna.
Tourism of Gokul
Gokul is popular as a religious destination amongst the pilgrims. Gokul Nath Ji is the most significant temple here. Other popular destinations include, the mud temple, which is located on the hillside and is believed that Krishna slayed many demons here, and Brahmand Ghat, where Yashoda viewed the universe inside Krishna's mouth. Utkhal is also very well-known. According to myths, Yashoda tied Krishna to a grinding mortar in punishment for stealing butter. It is situated almost 1 km from Mahavana town.