Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Puri, Jan 10:
The first lot of logs for construction of chariots for Lord Jagannath’s Rath Yatra in the Nabakalebar year arrived at the rathakhala (the site where the chariots for the Lord’s yatra are constructed) in Odisha’s pilgrim town Puri on Friday.
In the first lot, 40 pieces of logs reached the rathakhala in two trucks – 24 asan pieces and 16 dhoura pieces.
Of the 40 logs, 17 measuring 12 feet in length each and seven of 20 feet eachare of the asan variety, 12 of 12 feet length each from the dhoura variety and four logs of 20 feet each from the same variety.
As per tradition, three logs from the asan variety are consecrated on Saraswati puja day while construction of the chariots begins on the auspicious day of akshya trutiya.
As per the Ratha Sanhita, the manual for construction of chariots, 865 pieces of logs are required for construction of the three chariots. Various parts of the chariots are carved out of these logs.
The sawing of logs (ratha katha chirota parba) for the construction of the chariots begins on the Rama Navami day. Other than asan and dhoura, logs derived from phasi species of trees also play an important role in the construction of the chariots.
Taking into consideration 174 pieces of unused logs in stock from last year’s Rath Yatra, 611 pieces of logs will be required to be procured for this year’s Rath Yatra .
Besides, 40 logs from the neem species have been already procured for carvingthe idols of peripheral gods and goddesses which are placed on the body of the chariots. As per tradition, idols of peripheral gods and goddesses, horses, sarathi etc. used in the chariots are carved afresh in the Nabakalebar year.