KARWAR: The next time you plan to visit the famous Mahabaleshwara temple in Gokarna, make sure you carry traditional clothes. For the first time in the history of the temple, a dress code has been introduced. Visitors in shorts, Bermudas and skin-tight clothes will be stopped at the entrance by the security personnel.
The historic temple, now under the administration of the Endowment Department, has initiated this step which is said to be the first of its kind in the district. Earlier, both Indians and foreigners were allowed to enter the temple irrespective of their attire.
Speaking to The New Indian Express, H Halappa, executive officer of Gokarna temple, said earlier people used to visit the temple in traditional dresses like dhoti and sarees. “But nowadays devotees come in shorts, which is not appropriate. So, the Endowment Department has made dress code mandatory for this temple,” he added.
“We are only implementing the dress code in the temple which has been directed by the Endowment Department. By wearing traditional dresses, foreign tourists will also come to know about the tradition of our country,” he said.
The decision of the temple to introduce a dress code has evoked a mixed response. A priest from Gokarna said, “The new initiative is really appreciable. When visiting places of worship, people should dress accordingly.”
Nayana Naik, a devotee, said people who visit the temple don’t wear what is deemed as indecent dresses. Naik said some long-distance travellers could be excluded from the dress code.
Allowed: Dhoti, saree, traditional attire.
Not allowed: Bermuda, shorts, skin-tight clothes.