tripura rath yatra
Image: Northeast Now

Along with the rest of the country, Lord Jagannath’s Rath Yatra, the grand annual festival symbolizing harmony was also celebrated in Tripura with gaiety and fervour on Thursday.

In capital Agartala the main function took place in the Jagannath Temple where hundreds of thousands of devotees thronged to pull the chariot of Lord Jagannath.

In the year 1905, Maharaj Radha Kishore Manikya had built this Jagannath temple which is east facing like the famous Jagannath temple of Puri.

The deities in this temple were also brought from Puri and the festival in this temple started more than 114 years back.

According to Puranas and Mantras Jagatnath is the core deity who controls our path and mind.

In Tripura, after Durga Puja, the biggest gathering of people is Rath Yatra. It takes place during the Hindu month of Ashar or Sraban and people from various religions participate in the festival.

It has been taking place right from the royal time, now in spite of the size of the chariot getting smaller the people’s participation has increased. People enjoy the festive forgetting their religion and children also brings out small chariots.

Jagannath, which means the keeper of the universe, is an incarnation of the Hindu god Krishan.

The annual procession is a symbolizing celebration of Jagannath’s week-long journey from Kurukshetra to Bindraban to visit his maternal aunt’s house along with his elder brother Balabhadra and younger sister Subhadra some 5,000 years ago.

On the occasion, people worship Jagannath, Balaram and their sister Subhadra.

A large number of devotees participate in the Jagannath Rath Yara that takes annually and every year the participation of people is increasing.

Even people from outside also come to participate in the Rath Yatra in Tripura that is celebrated annually as Jagatnatha with Balar and Subhadra goes to visit their maternal aunt’s house.

The Rath Yatra in the eastern Indian city of Puri is among the few Hindu festivals which unify people rather than divide them along caste or religion.

According to Hindu belief, one who gets the ‘darshan’ of the god and goddess during Rath Yatra is washed of all earthly sins and is not born again in the earth as gets the blessings to stay back in the heaven.

One unique feature of Rath Yatra is that though it’s a Hindu festival, people from different other religions also participate in it to take blessings of Lord Jagannath, the keeper of the universe and for world peace so that people can live in peace.

Pinaki Das

Pinaki Das is Northeast Now Correspondent in Agartala. He can be reached at: pinakianisk@gmail.com

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