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Jagannath Ratha Yatra 2024 Begins Today

File Photo: Collected

File Photo: Collected

Ratha Yatra, the chariot festival of Sri Jagannath Dev which is one of the major festivals of the Hindu community, begins today. The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (Iskcon) in Dhaka has organized an eight-day event for the Ratha Yatra. The festival will come to an end with Ulto Rath Yatra (reverse journey) on July 15. In observance of the festival, different religious bodies and temple committees have drawn up various programmes. The main Ratha Yatra will begin at 3 pm on Sunday from the Swamibag Iskcon temple in the capital, traversing various streets and concluding at the Dhakeshwari temple.

 The programs of the festival will begin with the rendering of Harisangkirtan, holding of Agnihotra Jagna seeking world peace and people's welfare, recitation of verses from Srimat Bhagabat Geeta, distribution of mohaprosad, discussion, rendition of padaboli kirtan and arati, cultural function, staging of religious drama and screening of religious films.

 The programs of the ISKON at Swamibag in Dhaka will start with the holding of Agnihotra Jagna seeking divine blessings for world peace and people's welfare tomorrow morning.

 Mangla Pradip will be lit up later. 

 Later, a colorful procession will be brought out from Swamibagh temple with carrying images and idols of Sri Jagannath Dev, his brother Sri Balaram and sister Srimati Subhadra on three largely build Raths (chariots).

 Then the devotees will pull the ropes of the chariots through Tikatuli, Ittefak intersection, Shapla Chattar, Dainik Bangla, Purana Paltan intersection, National Press Club, High Court crossing, Doel Square, Ramna Kali temple, Dhaka University TSC, Jagannath Hall, Palashi Crossing and rounded up the Ratha Yatra on the premises of the Dhakeshwari National Temple.

 Besides, the Ratha Yatra festival will also be celebrated at Ramseeta Mandir at Joikali Mandir Road, at Shankharibazar, and Jagannath Jeo Mandir at Tantibazar in the old city and other places across the country.

 Special security measures have been taken marking the festival to avert any untoward incidents.

ISKON President Satyaranjan Barai said, that this year too Ratha Yatra will be held in a festive atmosphere. People of all castes and religions can participate in the Ratha Yatra. Ratha Yatra is known by different names. The Ratha Yatra of Jagannath Dev takes place from the temple of Jagannath Dev in Puri. Ratha Yatra is also a sacred festival of Hindus in Bangladesh. In Dhaka's Dhamrai, it is known as Yasomadhava's Rath Yatra. Ratha Yatra of Manikya Madhav in Joydevpur, Gazipur. The Ratha Yatra of Jasomadhava of the Indian state of Odisha and the Ratha Yatra of Jagannath Dev of Mahesh are also famous in the subcontinent. Ratha Yatra is widely practiced in the eastern states of India.

 Ratha Yatra is a journey in a chariot with deities of Jagannath (Vishnu avatar), Balaram, or Balabhadra (his brother), Subhadra (his sister), and Sudarshana Chakra (his weapon) on a Ratha, a wooden doula-shaped chariot accompanied by people in colorful procession.

 It attracts over a million Hindu pilgrims who join the procession each year in the Indian subcontinent including Bangladesh for long.

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