The Christian Science Monitor

Hindu prayer service? There’s an app for that.

A young girl sits on a scale at the ornately decorated Goud Saraswat Brahmin Seva Mandal in Mumbai. Source: Samuel Steinberger

India’s most popular Hindu temples can exhaust even the most patient person during high festival seasons. Devotees spend hours in snaking lines for a few hurried seconds of prayer before beloved deities. Temple attendants scold stragglers hoping to catch a couple more moments in the presence of a murti, or icon embodying the deity, as those next in line jostle for their own brief connection with the divine. The din of side conversations and music blends with blessings chanted over loudspeakers.

The VIP experience of a personalized prayer ceremony or a special request is a service reserved for a stratospherically select few.

That may change however, thanks to new start-ups and a growing group of followers channeling their faith through the internet. Online , or

Pujas from afar'We've got to evolve'Two-way transfer

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