Want to perform a puja but temple is far away…
India has a few lakh temples, out of whom a few hundred are most famous. Every devotee has his or her list of favourite temples, but time constraints, geographical limitations, unavoidable reasons or cost are often a limiting factor to anyone wanting to offer pujas at their favourite temples. This has led to Indians taking recourse to digital platforms to express their religious sentiments.
Online portals have made the task simpler for devotees by offering to arrange puja of their choice in the temple of their choice. The priests at the temple carry out the puja in the name of the person who has booked the pooja. The portal then couriers a package to the customer containing prasad, prayer DVD, dried flowers, vibhuti, sandalwood, vermillion etc as applicable.
Portals follow one of the three models. They tie-up with the temples, who ship the prasad and other requisites to the customer directly. Or the portal’s local representative will get the puja undertaken by the temple’s priests and then ship the prasad to the client. Or priests employed by the portal will themselves conduct the puja at the temple.
Some of the popular temples where pujas can be booked are Vaishno Devi, Palani Murugan, Ashtavinayak Temples, Kalighat Kali Temple, Siddhivinayak Mumbai etc. Do note that booking of puja in temples like Kashi Vishwanath and Tirupati Balaji has to be done with the websites of the temples only.
Find a pandit to perform puja at home…
Finding a pandit to perform puja at home was not an easy task, particularly during festival times. The nearest temple had to be visited and a hefty ‘dakshina’ had to be promised to ensure that the pandit turns up on the appointed date and time. With fewer persons taking up the profession of priesthood, things can only get worse over time.
Online portals are able to offer services of pandits in all major cities of India. The portals have a rigourous process of selection and documentation to ensure that the pandits are qualified and trained in scriptures. While coming over to conduct the puja, the pandit carries authentic puja ‘samagri’ that would be appropriate for the specific puja.
Last but not the least, the charges applied by portals have been standardized and are affordable too. Popular puja services are house-warming, thread ceremony, Laxmi puja, vivah puja etc.