Odisha: Devotees throng Talcher for 9-day Hingula yatra

On the day, morning puja was held where the Goddess appeared in the form of fire. The spot was then barricaded for all the rituals to be performed.
Goddess Hingula emerges in the form of fire  at Gopal Prasad
Goddess Hingula emerges in the form of fire at Gopal Prasad Photo| express

ANGUL: The nine-day long Hingula Yatra began on Monday with traditional fervour and gaiety at Gopal Prasad in Talcher. Thousands of devotees from Angul and neighbouring districts thronged the place to offer prayers to Maa Hingula, believed to be the Goddess of fire.

Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan along with Dhenkanal BJP Lok Sabha candidate Rudra Narayan Pany and Talcher Assembly candidate Kalandi Samal were among those who offered prayers during the ceremony. Even Congress Lok Sabha candidate Sashmita Behera performed puja.

It is believed, on Chaitra Chaturdashi day, Maa Hingula leaves Puri Srimandir and reaches Gopal Prasad to give darshan to her devotees. The Goddess appears as an incarnation of fire, about a kilometre away from Hingula temple in Gopal Prasad and remains in the same form for nine days after which Sitali Puja is done to douse the flame.

On the day, morning puja was held where the goddess appeared in form of fire. The spot was then barricaded for all the rituals to be performed.

Four platoons of police force, 16 inspectors and 61 sub-inspectors have been deployed at Gopal Prasad. Besides, an additional SP and two DSPs were also deployed.

On the first day, the event passed off peacefully. The entire area has been covered under CCTV surveillance.

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