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Rath Yatra: 9-day journy begins in Puri Grand Road

Rath Yatra: 9-day journy begins in Puri Grand Road

Puri .25th June 2017:: Glimpses of Puri Ratha yatra :: Photo: Biswaranjan Mishra

Puri: 25th June 2017 (By Debabrat Mohanty) Taladhwaj, Nandighosh and Darpadalan – at around 3.15 pm and offered prayer to Lords for smooth conduct of the festival.Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Devi Subhadra riding three giant wooden chariots were pulled by lakhs of devotees towards Gundicha temple.Lord Balabhadra’s chariot Taladhwaja began rolling at 3.55 pm followed by Devi Subhadra’s Darpadalan at 4.35 pm and Lord Jagannath’s Nandighosh at 5.18 pm.Elaborate security arrangements were put in place for smooth conduct of the festival. Several voluntary organizations also extended their service for the religious festival.Puri to partake in chariot pulling festival of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra and goddess Subhadra on Grand Road with joy and devotion.Entire Grand Road and limitless skies reverberated with the chanting of ‘Jai Jagannath’ and ‘Hari Bol’ by the devotees and pilgrims who witnessed the much-awaited annual Ratha Jatra.Pilgrims, who were capturing the entire view on their lenses, also rushed to the site where the chariots were parked and touched the holy rope out of devotion towards the sibling deities.The chariots were ready for moving towards their destination – Gundicha Temple – after the deities occupied their seats on their respective chariots post Pahandi (procession) and other rituals conducted by the servitors and priests.The deities were taken out of temple and brought in Pahandi, which began at around 10.30 am, to their chariots parked in front of Simha Dwar on Grand Road. After pahandi of the deities, Shankaracharya paid a visit to the Trinity on the chariots. Gajapati Dibyasingh Deba performed the Chhera Panhara rituals. Devotees from far and wide have gathered outside the Jagannath temple to participate in chariot pulling. While many devotees are busy chanting the deities names in kirtans in groups, many have dressed up as dancers or even as mythological characters of Hanuman and Lord Shiva. Foreign tourists also visited the pilgrim town in large numbers including many devotees of Lord Jagannath. The fervor was seen even alongside the road were devotees watched the proceedings from vantage points like hotels, private buildings and old Dharmashalas and mutts situated on the Grand Road in large numbers. Lord Sudarshan were taken out in Dhadi Pahandi (line procession) amidst sounds of ghanta (cymbals), kahali (type of shehnai), mahuri, mardal (similar to pakhawaj) and bells through Baisi Pahacha (22 steps of the shrine) en route to the chariots.Govardhan Peeth Shankaracharya Nischalananda Saraswati along with his disciples had darshan after the deities were placed on their respective chariots. Gajapati Maharaja Dibyasingh Deb conducted holy ritual of Chhera Pahanra (customary sweeping of chariot floor with golden broom) the journey will resume at 9 am on Monday, while the preparations will start from 8 am. Meanwhile, police cordon has been set up around the chariots. Devotees can only have darshan of the deities from outside the cordon. The deities will now return to the Jagannath temple only on the ninth day of the festival during the Bahuda Yatra. sea of humanity today thronged the pilgrim town The deities along with on three chariots –The nine-day festival will end with Bahuda Yatra (return journey) of deities to Jagannath temple

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