Religious procession with hundreds of devotees takes place in eastern India
Location Puri city, eastern India's Odisha. Date: 2023-06-20
Hundreds of devotees from the state, as well as every part of the country, travel to eastern India’s Odisha, to catch a glimpse of the three deities, Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra, and Devi Subhadra as they are carried in ornate chariots called Raths which are pulled by the devotees.
#Watch: Religious procession with hundreds of devotees takes place in Odisha
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Posted by Newslions on Wednesday, June 21, 2023
The procession took place in Puri city on June 20.
The auspicious festival begins with the Snana Yatra where the three deities are washed thoroughly in Ganges water. This is followed by the Anasara period where the deities are laid to ‘rest’. Thereafter, deities are carried to the Gundicha Temple where they reside for about eight to nine days. Afterwards, they return to their temple through a procession known as Bahuda Yatra.
It is one of the most awaited Hindu festivals in the country. Around 11 to 12 lakh devotees flocked to Grand Road to witness the deities ride chariot to Gundicha Temple, their birthplace. People fought with each other to take rope during the pulling of chariots as a wave of euphoria swept across Puri with chants of Jai Jagannath reverberating across the town. Among the chariot pullers were Governor Ganeshi Lal, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, Chief Justice of Orissa High Court S Muralidhar and Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.
There is no less enthusiasm among the devotees even in the scorching heat.
About a dozen sustained injuries after they fell down after hitting a motorcycle parked by the roadside while pulling the Taladhwaja chariot of Lord Balabhadra near Marchikot Chowk, about 300 metres from the Jagannath Temple. Several others were also injured during the procession.
Police have, however, denied any stampede-like situation during the festival. “Due to the heavy rush, five of them sustained minor injuries. No stampede broke out,” Puri SP Kanwar Vishal Singh said.