Bhubaneswar, 14th July, 2016 (OdishaLIVE Bureau): Devotees from around the world in multitudes swarmed to Puri, Odisha to behold the Bahuda Yatra, the return journey of the Chariots of the three deities, Lord Jagannath, Devi Subhadra and Balabhadra.
The morning rituals were started early resulting in a timely ‘Pahandi Bije’ or taking the deities to their Chariots. The ‘Chhera Pahanra’, a ritualistic sweeping of the three Chariots by the Gajapati of Puri, Shri Dibyasingh Deb was scheduled to be at 3pm in the afternoon which also took place earlier.
“Detailed security arrangements by the Police department helped in the smooth conduct of the event,” said the Director General of Police K.B. Singh. However, the turnout of the devotees to this year’s Bahuda Yatra is the lowest this year.
According to Tourism Department, last year on Nabakalebar Rath Yatra, more than 10 lakh people thronged to Puri for Sri Gundicha and an estimated 8 lakh people joined the Bahuda Yatra. Nonetheless, this year, a maximum of 2.5 lakh devotees assembled for the Bahuda Yatra.
The Bahuda Yatra is going to be followed by ‘Suna Besha’ on the 15th July, afternoon, where the deities will be attired in golden ornaments and the devotees can witness Lord Jagannath & his siblings on the Chariots. ‘Adhara Niti’ and ‘Niladri Bije’ will take place on the 16th and 17th July, respectively.