Puri Rath Yatra


Rath Yatra is a Car festival, or a chariot procession celebrated annually at Puri in Odisha, India. This festival is dedicated for Lord Jagannath of Puri temple which was built in 12th century AD by King Chodaganga Deva of the Ganga dynasty. Lord Jagannath, his elder brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra Devi are the presiding deities of this temple. It is an oldest Ratha Yatra in India and references to this yatra is found in age old puranas like Brahma Purana, Padma Purana, and Skanda Purana & Kapila Samhita and other Buddhists & Jains Scriptures.

Puri Rath Yatra Date 2023

Tue , 20th Jun 2023

Rath Yatra festival is celebrated on Shukla Paksha Dwitiya tithi of Ashadha month. On this day, Lord Jagannath- the Lord of the Universe comes out of the temple inner sanctum to give Darshan to all Devotees. They are decorated and placed in huge, colourful individual chariots that are drawn by multitude of devotees on the Bada Danda, a grand avenue that leads to the Gundicha Temple. This temple is located two miles away from the main temple to the north. On the way to the temple, Lord Jagannatha’s chariot pauses near Bhakta Salabega’s crematorium, to pay tributes to his Muslim devout.

Lord Jagannatha, Lord Balabhadra and Subhadra Devi stay at Gundicha Temple for seven days and commence their return on the 9th day and this is known as Bahudayatra. On their way back, Lord Jagannath stops for a while at MausiMaa Temple or Ardhasani temple, the Lord’s Aunt located near Saradha Bali. He accepts his favourite rice-cake, Poda Pitha from His Aunt.

The next day, on the Bada Ekadashi, all the three deities are decorated with costumes of shiny, glittering gold ornaments for Dharshan. This festive, gold adorned form of the deities is called 'SunaVesha'. Dwadashi is the last day of the event, the three deities resume their original place inside the inner sanctum, the 'RatnaSinghasana' of the temple.

The Chariots

The three chariots for Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Subhadra Devi are constructed every year with wood of specific trees like phassi, dhausa. Each chariot has a unique design and a name-Lord Jagannath- Nandighosha, Balabhadra- Taladhwaja and Subhadra Devi- Darpadalana. The designing and construction begin on Akshaya Trithiya. It is built with devotion and intricate details.; it is designed with nine Parsva devatas around the chariot, painted wooden idols are crafted and installed on the sides of the chariot. Each chariot has a charioteer (Sarathi), emblem, guardian, flag, an emblem and drawn by four horses. On the day of Rath Yatra, the canopy of the chariot is decorated with flowers. The chariots follow a particular order, Lord Balabhadra's chariot moves first, followed by Subhadra Devi’s and Lord Jagannath’s Nandighosha emerges at last.

Lakhs of of devotees gather for this Yatra and the three chariots are pulled by thousands of devotees. People throng Puri on this day, stay over in the city for 10 full days, to have Dharshan of 'SunaVesha'. It is believed that Dharshan of Lord Jagannatha on Ekadashi blesses salvation. Rath Yatra festival is now a famous festival overseas as well through ISKCON Hare Krishna movement. This festival has successfully been imparted to over 108 cities worldwide.

Important Timings On Puri Rath Yatra

Sunrise

June 20, 2023 5:45 AM

Sunset

June 20, 2023 7:10 PM

Dwitiya Tithi Begins

June 19, 2023 11:25 AM

Dwitiya Tithi Ends

June 20, 2023 1:07 PM

Puri Rath Yatra festival dates between 2020 & 2030

Year

Date

2020

Tuesday, 23rd of June

2021

Monday, 12th of July

2022

Friday, 1st of July

2023

Tuesday, 20th of June

2024

Sunday, 7th of July

2025

Friday, 27th of June

2026

Thursday, 16th of July

2027

Monday, 5th of July

2028

Saturday, 24th of June

2029

Friday, 13th of July

2030

Tuesday, 2nd of July

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