Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Puri, July 7:
Odisha’s holy city of Puri is all set for the Bahuda Yatra or the return procession of the deities to the Sri Jagannath temple today.
Thousands of devotees feasted on Mahaprasad on the occasion of Sandhya Darshan at the Gundicha temple here on Sunday.
All the three chariots have been parked at Saradhabali in front of Nakachana Dwar (exit gate) of the Gundicha temple, ready to carry the deities back to the Singha Dwara or the main gate of the Sri Jagannath temple, 3 kms away.
According to Sri Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) sources, the rituals for the Bahuda Yatra would begin at 4 am in the Gundicha temple and the deities would step out of the the temple in Pahandi style between 11 am and 1 pm.
The Puri Gajapati Dibysangha Deb is expected to perform the ritual of Chhera Pahanra by 2.30 pm and the pulling of chariots is scheduled to begin at 3 pm, teh sources added.
Bahuda Yatra takes place on the ninth day of the Rath Yatra festival, after the deities spend a week at Adapa Mandapa in Gundicha temple, which is also known as their place of birth.
On the way back to the main temple, the deities will stop for a short while and partake of poda pitha, a type of cake made of rice, lentils, jaggery and coconut, offered by their aunt, Mausima.
A day after reaching the main temple or the 11th day of the bright fortnight of Asadha, the deities- still placed on their chariots- will be adorned with gold ornaments and dressed gorgeously atop their respective chariots.
This is known as the Suna Besha, an event that draws over a million devotees and visitors every year.