Himansu Shekhar Rout

It is a matter of pride for Odisha as the famous Khandua Pata woven by handloom weavers of Tigiria Nuapatna in Cuttack will adorn the gracefully carved stone idol of Lord Ram in Ram Temple in Ayodhya which will be inaugurated on January 22. The special Ahimsa ‘Khandua Pata’ is being sent to Ayodhya. 

Significantly, ‘Ramcharita Manas’ a famous epic poem based on the Ramayana, has been written on this special cloth, prepared from Eri silk. The cloth was prepared after getting permission from the Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust. 

Sources said that a team of seven to eight weavers took 15 days to prepare this special Khandua Pata. The Khandua Pata was worshipped at Ram Mandir in Bhubaneswar on Wednesday before it was taken by a team of weavers to Ayodhya. 

Weavers said that Lord Ram will wear this Khandua Pata the day after the Pran Pratishtha ceremony.  

One of the weavers said, "We contacted Champat Rai, general secretary of Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust about our proposal of offering the Khandua Pata to Lord Ram. After getting his permission, a team of eight weavers prepared the Khandua Pata in 15 days. They have told us that the pata will be draped on the idol on January 23. We have been told to reach Ayodhya by January 18, but we will reach on January 19."
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Notably, Lord Jagannath wears his favourite attire - Gita Govinda Khandua Pata - which was earlier prepared from tussar silk by weavers in Nuapatna village. Later, the Odisha government decided that weavers would make Gita Govinda Khandua Pata from Eri silk which will be collected in a new method. In this method, killing silkworms is not required.

The pata is being prepared through non-violent means with Eri silk. The eri cocoons are open-mouthed and are spun.