Raksha Bandhan, a Hindu festival that signifies the bond between brothers and sisters, was recently celebrated at the BAPS Hindu Mandir in Abu Dhabi.
Handmade ‘rakhis’ or sacred threads were offered to more than 4,000 blue-collar expat workers during a special prayer led by temple chief Pujya Swami Brahmaviharidas.
The women’s wing of the temple, comprising 150 students, homemakers and working professionals, made some 10,000 ‘rakhis’ to mark the occasion.
In addition to the celebrations at the temple, each woman volunteer delivered the threads to 40 devotees who previously visited the temple.
“It’s a symbol of love and affection. Most people, especially workers, have their loved ones staying back home. So, following the instructions of Swami Brahmaviharidas we made these ‘rakhis’,” a senior volunteer told the Khaleej Times.
“We are a mix of students, homemakers and working professionals who made use of our spare time to procure materials, decorate, outreach, network and so on to make this occasion a special one,” said a senior volunteer.
Pujya Swami Brahmaviharidas said, “These thousands of ‘rakhis’ have been handmade with love by the women devotees of the UAE to gift each worker, symbolising blessings for brothers. Even this mandir will be handmade with love. Hence, in a place of great piety, we pray that may God guide and guard this beautiful nation, its leadership, and all those who call it their home.”