Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Preparations for Jagannathpur Rath Yatra enter home stretch – N.F Times

Puri: The stage is all set for the grand annual Rath Yatra or the chariot festival of Lord Jagannath and his siblings, scheduled to begin on Sunday, in the holy coastal city of Puri in Odisha.

Hundreds of traditional carpenters and painters are busy giving finishing touches to the three huge chariots of the Lords.

“The Rath Yatra, observed on the second day of the bright fortnight of Ashadha month of the Hindu calendar every year, is the most important festival of Jagannath temple when the holy triad embarks on the annual nine-day sojourn to their birthplace, Gundicha Temple (the Yagnya Vedi or the Garden house of the Lord) around three kilometres far from the Jagannath Temple. The devotees cutting across all the sects and creeds get a glimpse of the divine siblings during the Rath Yatra,” Jagannath culture researcher, Bhaskar Mishra, told IANS.

Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabadhra and Devi Subhadra fall sick after the three are bathed with 108 pitchers full of scented water during the Snan Yatra on the full moon day of the Jyeshtha month in the Hindu calendar (considered as the birthday of the Lord Jagannath).

The deities remain in seclusion and devotees are not allowed to have the darshan of the holy triad for 15 days, popularly known as the ‘Anasara’ period, when some secret rituals are performed by a particular group of servitors called ‘Daitapati’.

This year the Nava Youvan Darshan, Netrotsav (an important ritual carried out by the priests) and Rath Yatra are falling on the same day after a gap of 53 years throwing a big challenge before the priests and the administration to complete all the rituals to ensure the pulling of chariots start by 5 p.m. on July 7.

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