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Showing posts from May, 2015

Udvada: A strange mix of divinity and dhansak

There are many reasons why you should not visit Udvada (Udwada) and a few handful ones why you should. It is only when the positives outnumber the negatives should you plan to make that trip to the mecca (or the Vatican, if you please) of the Parsis.

Udvada is a small seaboard town tucked away in a corner of Gujarat, a mere fifteen kilometres from Daman. Renowned for its Zoroastrian heritage, Udvada houses the Atash Behram temple where the holy Iran Shah fire has been burning bright for the past thousand years or so. Legend has it that during the Muslim conquest of the Greater Iran, a group of Zoroastrians fled into the Indian sub-continent to preserve their quickly diminishing culture and populace. Initially finding refuge in Sanjan the minority tribe made the final transit into Udvada where the fire temple was consecrated in the 17th century. Today thousands of Parsi pilgrims visit every year for a glimpse of the ancient residence of the holy fire.

Unfortunately, I am not a Parsi an…