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She is certainly not like the “Gurus” or like the spiritual leaders. Former headmistress from a government school at Muzaffarpur, Krishna Pandey (65) however has the privilege to enjoy VVIP treatments by government along with 41 commandos from Bihar police to escort her safely from Sultanganj to Deoghar.
The spiritual lady, popularly know as Krishna Bum or Mata Bum among the Kanwariyas (saffron-cladded pilgrims) today on the river bank at Sultanganj along with the Kanwariya Path reflects the charisma of the lady for whom thousands of devotes remained fanatic. “We are waiting here to touch her feet, she is the original devotee of Lord Shiva by whose grace she has been managing to complete herculean tasks,” lamented Subhash Prasad, a Kanwariya from Midnapur in Bengal.
Hundreds of Kanwariyas particularly the Dak Bums (marathon runner who complete their holly voyage to Deoghar from Sultanganj only within 24 hours while running not stop to cover 105 km distance) became energetic before starting their journey to Babadham ,Deoghar just with a glimpse of Krishna Bum.
Krishna Bum, 65, collected holly Ganga Jal at around 2.pm today at Sultanganj. Being a Dak Bum Kanwariya, she would run without a stop to reach the temple of Lord Baidyanath in Deoghar, Jharkhand, and pour the water on the Shiva shrine by 9.30am on Monday. She has been performing the ritual on every Somwari (Monday) in the month of Shravan during the month-long Shravani Mela for last 36 years.
“She is just a living Goddess having special blessing of Lord Baidhyanath. If you see her, all your troubles and problems on the route (Kanwariya Path) would automatically vanish,” was the version of many Kanwariyas who have deep believe on her.
“ By the grace of Lord Mahadeva, she has special power, If one touchs her feet, his/her lives would be changed,” said Binod Kumar, a Kanwariya from Uttar Pradesh who has been coming here for the last 15 years.
“I don’t know why people developed so faith on me, always want to touch my feet that too in many occasion became dangerous for me. Actually, the devotees of Lord Baidhyanath are very innocent and pure hearted. I am an ordinary lady but people respect and love me, I think it’s due to my this hard missing which I have been performing for the last 36 years,” she told while walking on Kanwariya Path today.
Such wide popularity makes this spiritual lady as a VVIP on the entire Kanwariya route. She has been provided a special escort team of 41 security personnel to protect her from the mob of Kanwariyas who all want to touch her feet. “Special commando forces consists of the escort party of Mata Bum ( Krishna Bum), they use to run with her but in between Sultanganj to Deoghar the escort changes at 3-4 points,” said a top ranking cop at Bhagalpur. “This time we provide security for her,” confirmed superintendent of police, Banka, Chandan Kushwaha.
Not only at Bihar, Jharkhand government also takes care of her when she enters Deoghar’s jurisdictions. The commandos who take her responsibility from the hands of their Bihar counterpart at Dumma Gate, the border of Bihar-Jharkhand’s border, they will run with her to the Lord Baidyanath’s temple in Deoghar, where she has the privilege to enter the shrine without standing in a queue. Then, they would escort her to Jasidih railway station, where she would board a train to Muzaffarpur.
She however don’t mind for such frenzy Kanwariyas as she called them the true disciples of Lord Shiva. She also put emphasis on the significance of this month long Shravani Mela and vis-a visa its socio-economic impact of this month long Mela on the society. “It’s one of the biggest religious congregation which could be witnessed on the 105 km stretch of this Kanwarai Path continuously without any disruption, throughout the month of Shravan,” She pointed out. Pointing out the discipline and restricted lives of the Kanwariyas on this Kanwariya Path, she said it reflects the spiritual heritage of the country besides promoting tolerance, brotherhoods and respect to each others.
She also disclosed how she was originally inspired to undertake the arduous pilgrimage, said: “My husband Nand Kishore Pandey, who works in a private construction company, suffered from serious health problems 37 years ago. I prayed for his recovery and started visiting Lord Baidyanath’s temple every Monday during Shravan. Which now became a common practice for me”.
“ With the grace of Lord Shiva I shall continue to do this as long as I am alive” she added.