Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Kharipadia (Jagatsinghpur, Apr 29:
Six days after the identification of daru for Goddess Subhadra at the Nilakantheswar temple in Adhangagada under Biridi block in Odisha’s Jagatsinghpur district, the daru of Lord Jagannath was identified at Kharipadia under Raghunathpur block in the district today.
Chief Administrator of Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) Suresh Chandra Mohapatra made the formal announcement on the location of daru of Lord Jagannath this morning.
“SJTA made official announcement after receiving the letter from the Banajaga dalapati Haladhara Das Mohapatra on the identification of daru for Lord Jagannath in the late night yesterday. I reached Kharipadia village early this morning with senior police officers,” Mohapatra told reporters here.
He said as the place where the daru has been located is narrow and situated on the bank of the river, a lot of work has to be done for the easy access of the devotees.
“We have to level the land first and create additional space for Sabarapalli and jajna mandap. Senior engineers of Energy, RWSS and Works departments have arrived at the village to carry out necessary works. We are trying to complete the works as early as possible to facilitate the devotees who would throng the area in large numbers”, he added.
Mohapatra, however, said the devotees would not be allowed to visit the site for 3-4 hours since the barricading and other ancillary works have begun.
“We would allow the devotees to visit the place after barricading the daru and levelling the ground around it are completed. Besides, we have decided to restrict the movement of vehicles in the area as the nearby agricultural lands are filled with water due to heavy rains last night.” he informed.
Talking about the traffic arrangements and law and order in the area, IG, Central Range, RP Koche said six platoons of police force have already been deployed in the area.
“I have informed the state police headquarters to send additional forces to the area”, he said.
Jagatsinghpur collector Satya Kumar Mallick, who was present at the site, said the district administration has requested the devotees not to visit the site today since there is acute traffic problem.
“Since the area has been filled with water due to heavy rains last night, no vehicle would be allowed to the area till the water dries up. The administration has engaged four bulldozers to level the area while the barricades are being erected around the daru”, he said.
About the location of Sabarapalli and jagna mandap, the collector said a team of Banajaga daitapatis will arrive here at about 4 PM for a discussion in this regard.
“On the basis of their suggestions, the work would begin”, he added.
Talking to the media, Jagannath Swain Mohapatra, Badagrahi of Lord Jagannath, said the Banajaga daitapatis would arrive at Kharipadia after May 6.
“I have been associated with the Nabakalebara two times earlier. But I have never seen the mahadaru of Lord Jagannath like this before. Of all the trees you find in this area, this tree is easily identified. Anyone watching this tree would make his/her hair bristle with excitement. You can see a white owl on a branch guarding the daru. You can see the colour of the daru which is black which symbolises Lord Jagannath. The tree has all the characteristics for the daru of the Lord,” Mohapatra said.
For identification of the daru of Lord Jagannath’s daru, the daitapatis examine some of the symptoms which are as follows:
The tree must be very old and the colour of its bark should be black. The log of the tree having four main branches should be straight and upright with a height of 7-12 feet. There should be a termite mound near the tree with snakes. The tree must have the sign of sankha (conch) and chakra (wheel) on it and must not have any birds’ nest. Besides, the tree should be either near a river bank, funeral ground, a mutt or a temple with Barun and Sahada trees near it.
It is worthwhile here to mention that the during Nabakelabara in 1912, the daru of Lord Jagannath was found at Prataprudrapur Nuasahi in Khordha district; at Gabapada in Satyabadi panchyat in Puri district in 1931; at Harihar near Kanpur in Cuttack district in 1950; near a stream at Champadhar at Tapang in Khordha district in 1969; at Raichakradharpur village of Satyabadi block in Puri district in 1977 and at Dadhimachhagadia village in Khordha district in 1996.