BAHUDA YATRA, ADHARA PANA AND SUNA VESHA

Bahuda Yatra is the Return Journey of the three chariots to Jagannath Temple. After spending a week inside the Gundicha temple, the deities commence their Bahuda Yatra on the 10th day. The return journey follows the same protocol and schedule, as is found during the Ratha Yatra. During the return journey, the three chariots stop for awhile at the Mausima Temple, also known as Ardhasani Temple. This temple is dedicated to the aunt of Lord Jagannath. Here three deities are offered ‘Poda Pitha’, a special sweet made of rice, coconut, lentils and jaggery. After taking Poda Pitha, three deities start their journey to the main temple. The chariots of Balabhadra and Subhadra move forward and are parked at Lion’s gate (Singha dwara) of the temple where as the chariot of Jagannath again halts in front of the King's palace. In the meanwhile Goddess Lakshmi (wife of Lord Jagannath) steals a glimpse of the safe return of Jagannath's chariot from the Chaha ni Mandapa (Pavilion for view). Being pleased Goddess Lakshmi is carried to the chariot of Jagannath while sitting in the Palanquin. She is offered a loving garland which Lord Jagannath uses as loving souvenir from her partner. After receiving the garland Goddess Lakshmi goes back to the Temple and awaits her partner. This event facilitates Lord Jagannath to make arrangement for his successful entry to the main Temple. On the day of Bahuda Yatra the Deities remain in their respective chariots parked in front of the main temple.

SUNA VESHA

On the same day, during evening the three deities are dressed in glittering gold on their respective chariots. This day is also known as ‘Suna Vesha’. The gold is stored at the temple's bhandara ghar (treasury). The bhandara nikap priests (store in-charge), guarded by armed police men and temple officials, brought the required amount of gold from the bhandara ghar before 1 hour and handed them over to the puspalaka and daitapati priests on the chariots. The daitapati priests are responsible to decorate the Deities' body with gold jewelry. Devotees witnessed the Suna Besha from evening 5 pm till 11 pm.

Suna Vesha of Lord Balabhadra
Suna Vesha of Lord Balabhadra
Suna Vesha of Goddess Subhadra
Suna Vesha of Goddess Subhadra
Suna Vesha of Lord Jagannath
Suna Vesha of Lord Jagannath

All the three deities are decorated with gold ornaments. Lord Jagannath and Balabhadra appear with hands and feet made of gold. Lord Jagannath holds a gold Chakra(disc) in his right hand and a silver conch in the left hand. Lord Balabhadra appears holding a gold plough in the left hand and a gold mace in the right hand.

The following ornaments are used to decorate the Deities in Suna Vesha:

  • Suna Hasta - Golden Hand
  • Suna Payar - Golden feet
  • Suna Mukuta - Golden Crown
  • Suna Mayur Chandrika - A golden peacock feather used by Lord Jagannath as Sri Krishna head piece
  • Suna Chulapati - A golden ornament worn traditionally on the forehead to increase the beauty of the face
  • Suna Kundal - Golden earring of hanging round ball type
  • Suna Rahurekha - A half square shaped golden aura around the face of the deities
  • Suna Mala - Necklaces with Several Design made of gold. These include:
    • Padma Mala - Lotus Shaped
    • Sevati Mala - Shaped Like Small Sun Flower
    • Agasti Mala - Moon Shaped flower design
    • Kadamba Mala - Kadamba Flower Design (Round ball shape)
    • Kante Mala - Big Gold Beads Design
    • Mayur Mala - Shaped in Peacock feathers
    • Champa Mala - Shaped liked Yellow champa Flower
  • Suna Chakra - Golden Wheel
  • Suna Gada - Golden bludgeon
  • Suna Padma - Golden lotus
  • Rupa Sankha - A silver conch

Suna Mukuta - Golden Crown
Suna Mukuta - Golden Crown
Suna Hasta - Golden Hand
Suna Hasta - Golden Hand

ADHARA PANA

On the 11th day (Ekadasi), the three deities are offered a refreshing drink named as ‘Adhara Pana’. In local language ‘Adhara’ means ‘Lip’ and ‘Pana’ is a sweet scented drink made of milk, sugar, cheese, banana, camphor, nuts, black pepper etc. Apart from these ingredients, other herbal plant extracts like tulasi (holy basil) are also mixed into the drink. The deities are offered Adhara Pana on huge cylindrical earthen pots reaching up to their lips. The drink was filled in nine earthen pots and each of the deities was offered three pots each on their respective chariot. The Raghavadas Matha, Odia Matha and temple administration together contribute the pots and the drink for the occasion.

The priests offer the drink to the deities by performing "Sodosha Upachar Pooja’. Once the Puja gets over the earthen pots are broken by the servitors and the Pana spreads all over the chariot. It is believed that several evil spirits, ghostly bodies and dissatisfied souls trail the deities during the Car Festival. As per the ritual, the Adhara Pana is not for the devotees and servitors but it is only for these evil spirits and the minor deities present on the three chariots (Parsva Devatas) to guard the chariots during Ratha Yatra. The smashing of these earthen pots on the chariots is purposefully done because the drink is not for the consumption by the devotees and also to ensure that all these invisible forces and Parsva Devatas consume the Adhara Pana and get satisfied.

Adhara Pana offered to Lord Balabhadra
Adhara Pana offered to Lord Balabhadra
Adhara Pana offered to Goddess Subhadra
Adhara Pana offered to Goddess Subhadra
Adhara Pana offered to Lord Jagannath
Adhara Pana offered to Lord Jagannath

NILADRI VIJAY

On the 12th day, after the evening rituals, the deities return to the main temple. Deities are taken to the sanctum (Ratna Singhasana) in goti pahandi procession. In goti pahandi procession the Deities move one after another, it means the next Deity only moves from the chariot after the former Deity reached to his/her destination. Before entering the main temple, a traditional act between the servitors of Lord Jagannath and Mahalaxmi was held at the main gate (Jaya Vijaya Door) of the temple. Mahalaxmi, the consort of the Lord Jagannath, was angry as she was left in the main temple and was not a part of the trip to the Gundicha temple. She closes the temple gate on the face of the Lord Jagannath and only allows Lord Balabhadra, Goddess Subhadra and Lord Sudarshana into the temple. To appease Mahalaxmi and to gain access to the temple, Lord Jagannath offers rasagolla (sweet) and requested her to forgive him. After a long conversation, Mahalakshmi finally convinced and opens the temple gate and allows Lord Jagannath inside. After that, Jagannath is made to sit beside Lakshmi where a ritual of reunion is rehearsed and finally Lord Jagannath ascends the Ratna Singhasana and re-joins his brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra. Deities home coming ceremony to the temple is known as ‘NILADRI VIJAY’ or ‘Niladri Vije’ and ends historic Car Festival.

Back to Home