2019.07.19 (VT): After several years of petitioning the UP Government, the area known as Keshav Vatika in Shri Krishna Janmasthan in Mathura is about to be reopened for visitors.
The garden was closed off in 1996 for ‘security reasons’ as the birthplace of Lord Krishna is a highly sensitive area, which remains under strict surveillance. Following the demolition of the Babri Masjid in 1992 and the retaliation attacks that lead to widespread disturbance across the country, security measures were stepped up in Varanasi, Ayodhya and Mathura.
With the increase in security, the garden became a base for the security force, although there was no agreement stating that it was to be occupied by the force.
The matter was brought to the attention of CM Yogi Adityanath when he visited Janmasthan in 2018, and, following that, a delegation went to meet the Chief Minister to bring his attention to the matter. Now, after Yogi’s intervention, the area is about to be reopened.
Prior to 1996, devotees could visit the 3.5 acre garden on the left side of Govindnagar Gate of Shri Krishna Janmabhoomi. It was a popular place for events as the tree cover provides shade and a pleasant atmosphere.
When the Yogi Adityanath Government came to power in 2017, the management of Janmasthan made an appeal to have the garden reinstated as a place for devotees to gather. SSP Shalabh Mathur said that the park has been inspected. The plans for the development of the park have been sent for approval.