Woman ‘begged’ to serve Lord Jagannath by donating Rs 1 lakh
Tula Behera from Chauliaganj in Cuttack has lived on alms donated by the devotees visiting the Jagannath, Sai and Shiva temples in Phulbani for the last 40 years.
Published: 17th December 2022 03:58 AM | Last Updated: 17th December 2022 03:58 AM | A+A A-
PHULBANI/BERHAMPUR: A 70-year-old woman who eked out a living by begging did not think twice before parting with her life savings of Rs 1 lakh as a donation to the Jagannath temple here on Friday.
Tula Behera from Chauliaganj in Cuttack has lived on alms donated by the devotees visiting the Jagannath, Sai and Shiva temples in Phulbani for the last 40 years. Earlier, she used to work as a daily wager in Chauliaganj and married the love of her life Prafulla, also a labourer. However after some years health issues rendered Prafulla handicapped.
The couple then moved to Phulbani where they had to beg to sustain. Later after Prafulla passed away, Tula adopted a destitute Okia Mahakud as her daughter and both continued to beg near the temples. Through the years, they managed to save some money from their income in a bank here.
The day Tula realised that her saving has reached Rs 1.20 lakh, she and her daughter decided to donate Rs 1 lakh to the Jagannath temple towards construction of a guest house for the saints. “We were shocked and reluctant to accept the donation but her devotion towards Lord Jagannath moved us,” said president of the temple managing committee Sunasir Mohapatra.
“We felicitated her and decided to provide prasad to both of them besides looking after their needs from here on,” Mohapatra added. “I have no relatives and lived most of my life begging. Now I want to spend the remaining years of my old age in service of Lord Jagannath. If it can be of any use for the temple, I will feel blessed,” Tula said.