Puri: In Puri Rath Yatra, Chariots of Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra, Devi Subhadra have reached Gundicha temple.
For the first time ever, the annual Rath Yatra is being performed in the absence of devotees amid COVID-19 restrictions.
Chief Minister of Odisha Naveen Patnaik thanked everyone including servitors, Puri district administration, health department, and police for the smooth conduct of Rath Yatra.
AIR correspondent reports, three chariots have reached Gundicha temple in Puri. At first Taladhawaja chariot carrying Lord, Balabhadra reached the Gundicha temple followed by Devi Subhadra’s ‘Darpadalan’ and Lord Jagannath’s Nadighosh.
Earlier, Puri Gajapati Maharaj Dibyasingh Deb performed Chhera Panhara ritual on the three chariots.
According to the Shrimandir administration, all the rituals including Pahandi in which the deities were taken out of the Srimandir in a ceremonial procession to the three chariots and the subsequent pulling of chariots concluded on schedule.
As per tradition, the chariot of Balabhadra was pulled first, followed by Goddess Subhadra and Lord Jagannath’s chariots.
Hundreds of servitors and police personnel pulled the chariots of three Lords. They were permitted to do that only after they had tested negative for Covid-19.
Moreover, A partial curfew has been imposed in Puri and all the entry points to the town have been sealed since last night.
The festival marks the annual journey of the three deities, Lord Jagannath and his siblings, from the 12th century Jagannath temple to the Gundicha temple.
The festival ends after nine days when the deities make their way back to the Jagannath temple.