(Krishnashtami, Gokulashtami, Ashtami Rohini, Srikrishna Jayanti and Sree Jayanthi)
Devotees, who observe fast on Janmashtami, should have only single meal a day before Janmashtami. On fasting day, devotees take Sankalpa to observe a day long fast and to break it on the next day when both Rohini Nakshatra and Ashtami Tithi are over. Some devotees break the fast when either Rohini Nakshatra or Ashtami Tithi is over. Sankalpa is taken after finishing morning rituals and the day long fasting begins with Sankalpa.
The time to perform Krishna Puja is during Nishita Kala which is the midnight as per Vedic time-keeping. Devotees perform detailed ritualistic Puja during midnight and it involves all sixteen steps which are part of Shodashopachara (षोडशोपचार) Puja Vidhi. Please check Krishna Janmashtami Puja Vidhi which lists all Puja steps for Janmashtami along with Vedic Mantra to perform the Puja.
Krishna was the eighth son of Devaki and Vasudeva. Based on scriptural details and astrological calculations, the date of Krishna's birth, known as Janmashtami, is 18 July 3228 BCE and he lived until 18 February 3102 BCE. Krishna belonged to the Vrishni clan of Yadavas from Mathura, and was the eighth son born to the princess Devaki and her husband Vasudeva.
Mathura (in present-day Mathura district, Uttar Pradesh) was the capital of the Yadavas, to which Krishna's parents Vasudeva and Devaki belonged. King Kansa, Devaki's brother, had ascended the throne by imprisoning his father, King Ugrasena. Afraid of a prophecy that predicted his death at the hands of Devaki's eighth son, Kansa had the couple locked in a prison cell. After Kansa killed the first six children, and Devaki's apparent miscarriage of the seventh (which was actually a secret transfer of the infant to Rohini as Balarama), Krishna was born.
Following the birth, Vishnu ordered Vasudeva to take Krishna to Gokul to Nanda and Yashoda, where he could live safely, away from his Uncle Kansa. Vasudeva took Krishna with him and crossed the Yamuna to reach Gokul. There, everyone was asleep; so he quietly kept him there and returned with Yashoda's daughter. Kansa, thinking her to be Devki's eight child, threw her on a stone. But she rose into the air and transformed into Yogmaya (who is Vishnu's helper) and warned Kansa about his death. Then, she disappeared. Krishna grew up in Gokul with his brother, Balram. He then returned to Mathura and killed Kansa with the help of Balram.
Krishna Janmashtami Puja Muhurat
5243th Birth Anniversary of Lord Krishna
Nishita Puja Time = 23:58 to 24:44+
Duration = 0 Hours 46 Mins
Mid Night Moment = 24:21+
On 26th, Parana Time = After 10:52
On Parana Day Ashtami got over before Sunrise
On Parana Day Rohini Nakshatra End Time = 10:52
Dahi Handi on 26th, August
Ashtami Tithi Begins = 22:17 on 24/Aug/2016
Ashtami Tithi Ends = 20:07 on 25/Aug/2016
Fasting Rules on Krishna Janmashtami
No grains should be consumed during Janmashtami fasting until the fast is broken on next day after Sunrise. All rules followed during Ekadashi fasting should be followed during Janmashtami fasting also.
Parana which means breaking the fast should be done at an appropriate time. For Krishna Janmashtami fasting, Parana is done on next day after Sunrise when Ashtami Tithi and Rohini Nakshatra are over. If Ashtami Tithi and Rohini Nakshatra don't get over before Sunset then fast can be broken during day time when either Ashtami Tithi or Rohini Nakshatra is over. When neither Ashtami Tithi nor Rohini Nakshatra is over before Sunset or even Hindu Midnight (also known as Nishita Time) one should wait to get them over before breaking the fast.
Depending on end timing of Ashtami Tithi and Rohini Nakshatra fasting on Krishna Janmashtami might continue for two complete days. Devotees who are not able to follow two days fasting might break the fast on next day after Sunrise. It has been suggested by Hindu religious text Dharmasindhu.