PURI: Ending their 11-day annual sojourn since Rath Yatra, the Trinity entered the sanctum sanctorum of Puri temple on Thursday night. ‘Niladri Bije’ marked the return of Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Devi Subhadra to their permanent abode.
Thousands of devotees thronged the pilgrim town to witness the deities being escorted to the temple in ‘pahandi’ procession. Thursday also saw devotees offering ‘Rasagolla’ to the deities on chariots.
In the age-old ritual associated with the ceremony, Lord Jagannath offered ‘Rasagolla’ to His consort Goddess Mahalaxmi before entering the sanctum sanctorum.
For, the Goddess was miffed as the God left her behind when the divine siblings went on a sojourn to Gundicha temple. The heated exchange between Lord Jagannath and Goddess Mahalaxmi near the shrine entrance was enacted by two sets of servitors of the temple in an act called Bachanika. Then, Lord Jagannath tried to appease Goddess Mahalaxmi with ‘Rasagolla’.
Elaborate measures were made by the temple administration for smooth conduct of the festival. Security was tightened in and around the temple.
Badagrahi Replies to Show Cause
Jagannath Swain Mahapatra, the Badagrahi Daitapati of Lord Jagannath, filed his answer to the showcause issued to him by the Sri Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) over climbing of a woman devotee atop the Lord’s chariot last week.
A servitor of Jagannath temple, Kalijuga Artatran Pratihari, was suspended by SJTA Chief Administrator SC Mohapatra last week for allowing the devotee atop the chariot of Lord Jagannath on Monday before ‘Adapa Pahandi’ of the Lords.
This was in violation of the SJTA decision not to allow devotees to climb the three chariots. A showcause was issued to Swain Mahapatra as he was accused of allowing the servitor to take the woman atop the chariot.
Swain Mahapatra has stated in his reply that he as a Badagrahi is responsible for safety of Lord Jagannath and not keeping a check on devotees climbing the chariots. “The police and the Jagannath temple security personnel guarding the chariot did not prevent the woman from climbing the chariot,” he said.
Doors fixed, moss cleaned
Puri: The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) officials have fixed the Kalahat and Jai Vijay doors of the Jagannath temple and completed cleaning of moss from the walls of the sanctum sanctorum. They have set temporary scaffolding under the roof of Jagamohan which has been severely damaged. Similarly, a cooling system has been installed in the temple to keep the sanctum sanctorum cool and exhaust humid air from the enclosure. The moss was accumulated due to moisture from the steaming food that is offered to the Trinity a number of times in a day and the respiration of thousands of devotees who enter the sanctum sanctorum to offer obeisance to the deities. An expert team comprising structural engineers, ASI officials and members of SJTA on Monday last week inspected the ventilation system in the sanctum sanctorum. The team led by AP Gupta, former head of Civil Engineering department of IIT-Kharagpur, found a thick layer of moss on the inner walls and the roof. The team members suggested to ASI to carry out immediate repair in Jagamohan for stability of the structure.