AHMEDABAD: An endless queue of people with bundles of documents needed to complete visa formalities and passports, in hand. Not a line outside the visa consulate or facilitation centre, but men and women lined up, at the Sidhdheshwer Chamatkarik Hanuman mandir, to offer visa documents to God, instead of prasad!
For, they believe, "visa god" will make their dreams, of flying to foreign shores, come true. The 400-year-old temple, at Desai ni pol in Khadia, has in recent years come to be known as Visa Hanuman.
"Every Saturday, of the 4000 devotees who throng the temple, more than fifty per cent are visa-seekers, who come praying for visas," says Gaurang Mehta, resident of Desai ni pol.
"The devotees come with offerings of visa documents and passports, which the Pujari lays at the feet of Visa Hanuman and makes the devotees recite a Chaupayee (a prayer note) of lord Hanuman," says Mehta.
"It is believed that if the ritual is performed in earnest, the devotee gets the visa within a month," says Bhushan Bhatt, a local corporator. "Apart from Ahmedabad, devotees from Vadodara, Surat, Rajkot, and smaller towns and villages across the state come in large numbers to this temple. It's a matter of belief. Devotees have firm faith that after visiting the temple, their visa will be granted," adds Bhatt.
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