Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Adhangagada/Bhubaneswar, May 2:
As Devi Subhadra’s daru fell to the ground at Adhangagada in Odisha’s Jagatsinghpur district this evening and that of Lord Balabhadra made its way to its ultimate destination of Puri, the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) today announced that the sagadis (carts) carrying the darus of the deities will move only during the night from now on.
“Police administration has made all arrangements for the journey of the sagadi. Henceforth, the sagadis will move only during the night to avoid traffic congestion,” said Suresh Mohapatra, SJTA chief administrator, in Bhubaneswar today.
The SJTA decision was apparently prompted by the huge crowd that turned up all along the way as the sagadi carrying Lord Balabhadra’s daru slowly wound its way on the National Highway No 5 on its way to Puri yesterday and today.
Even as the sagadi carrying Lord Balabhadra’s daru left Pandra on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar this evening, the neem tree identified as the daru (neem tree with divine signs and special attributes) for the carving of the new idol for Devi Subhadra finally fell to the groundat the premises of the Nilakantheswar temple in the nondescript village of Adhangagada in Odisha’s Jagatsinghpur district.
Chants of Jai Jagannath, Hari bol, ululation by thousands of devotees and beats of mridangas and cymbals reverberated in the air as the massive neem tree crashed to the ground exactly at 6.31 pm this evening.
The felling of the tree began after conduct of a secret ritual at the base of the tree by Daitapatis on the completion of purnaahuti and puspanjali at the mahayagna. The Vidyapati of the Banajaga team touched it with a golden axe followed by Biswabasu with a silver axe after which the Biswakarma (carpenter servitors) removed the soil from around the tree and cut the tree with iron axes.
“It was only due to the blessings of Maa Subhadra on the Banajaga Yatris that the daru fell to the ground in so little time. I have no words to describe my feelings; the entire area is overwhelmed with spirituality. We never thought that it will happen so early. Let the Lord bless the whole of Jagatsinghpur district and its people,” said a senior Daitapati.
Meanwhile, the entire route through which the sagadi carrying the Lord Balabhadra’s daru is passing en route to Puri is in the grip of spiritual fervour of the kind that is seen during the Rath Yatra. Devotees are sprinkling flowers and making offerings to the daru. There were others who laid sarees and decorated the road with rangoli. The sound of conch shells, ululation, and beats of mridangas, cymbals, and chants of Haribol etc. is adding to the spiritual fervour.
The sagadi, which is moving from Pandra on its way to Puri, will halt for the night at the Dula Devi temple near Uttara, said a member of the team of Daitapatis accompanying the daru of Lord Balabhadra.
Devotees made a beeline braving the scorching heat and humid conditions today to have glimpse of the sagadi carrying the daru of Lord Balabhadra from Kanakpur during its halt at the Jagannath temple at Pandra on the outskirts of the capital city today.