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Jagannath Rath Yatra

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Jagannath Rath Yatra is a Hindu festival. It is held every year to commemorate the glory of god Jagannath. It is one of the most popular festivals in the state of Odisha.

According to Legendary, god Krishna would live in Puri during Kalyug. The Rath Yatra festival of ‘Lord Jagannath’ in Puri is world famous. Jagannath Puri is the ultimate destination for pilgrims.

The Rath Yatra festival of Puri, Odisha is biggest in the world. On this day, Lord Jagannath (along with Balarama and Subhadra) sits on a huge chariot and travel to Gundicha Temple. The amazingly beautiful idols of gods are placed on the beautifully decorated grand chariot. Thousands of devotees pull the chariot and seek blessings of the god.


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Why it is celebrated?

This festival is celebrated in the memory of Lord Jagannath. He is one of the ten incarnations of Vishnu. Fifteen days after his annual bath, He is brought out. He is placed on a car with his elder brother, Balbhadra, and his sister, Subhadra. The sacred car of Rath is then drawn to Ganga boro. Here Jagannath rests for a week. The worshippers continue to shower their offerings on the Lord for a week. The Punarjatra or the return of Jagannath comes after a week. Then he comes back to his own temple.


Significance of Ratha Yatra Festival

Yatra is the most famous and ritual part of the worship in the Hindu religion. It may be of two types, one is the Yatra made by the devotees all around the temple and another one is the Chariot Yatra of the Hindu deities in a well decorated chariot from one temple to another. Ratha Yatra is also the second type of the Yatra celebrated annually to perform the journey of Lord Jagannath with Lord Balabhadra and sister Goddess Subhadra from the Puri Jagannath temple to the Gundicha Mata Temple. It is considered that the Vamana avatar means the dwarf form of the Lord Vishnu was an incarnation of the Lord Jagannath.

Yatra is the most significant event occurred during the special and sacred occasions of the Hindu religion. Lord Jagannath is the Hindu deity whom incarnation was the Lord Krishna on the earth in the Dwaper Yuga. This special festival of holy journey of the chariot is carried out by the devotees, saints, scriptures, poets chanting the holy mantras and devotional songs. People want to touch the chariot or even ropes pulling the chariot to be blessed by the God. Devotees sing a special Oriya song at this day while pulling the holy chariot on wheels.


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How Ratha Yatra is celebrated in Puri

The whole festival celebration includes three huge attractive decorated chariots resembling temple structures drawn throughout the streets at Puri.

 During the festival celebration, millions of Hindu devotees from all over the world come to the destination to be the part of celebration and get blessed with lots of blessings of the god Jagannath.

People pull chariots by singing devotional songs on the sound of drums and trumpets including other musical instruments. The whole celebration of the sacred festival gets broadcasted live on the various TV channels all through the India and abroad. Chariots construction works starts at Akshaya Trutiya in front of the Puri palace using woods of special trees such as dhausa, phassi and etc brought from the other state by the team of carpenter. The celebration of the Rath Yatra at Puri is the grandest in India. Thousands of pilgrims assemble on this sacred place. They come from different parts of the country. The gathering at Puri on these occasions is the largest in India or perhaps in the world. All the huge chariots are brought to the majestic temple at the Sinhadwara or Lion’s Gate.  On the day of the journey, people get up early and offer prayers to Jagannatha and the other godess. Three beautifully chariots are lined up in front of the Puri temple and in them, the wooden images of Krishna, Balrama and Subhadra are taken out in procession in the late afternoon to their summer temple Gundicha mandir for a week. The ropes of the huge chariots are pulled by millions of devotees and pilgrims. When the chariots reach Gundicha mandir, the idols are installed.  This ritual is called the Phera Rath Yatra. Children pull Small wooden chariots with tiny idols installed on them along the streets. Shops and houses are decorated with flowers, lights and rangoli.


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