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Rashmi Rekha Das

The Dakhina Moda ritual (southward turn) of the three chariots of Lord Jagannath and his siblings parked outside the Gundicha temple in Puri will be conducted today, marking the beginning of the process for Bahuda Yatra, the homeward journey of the sibling deities to Srimandir.

Since Rath Yatra, the chariots parked in front of Gundicha Temple are facing north. They will be turned towards Jagannath Temple in the south. That’s why this ritual is called Dakhina Moda ritual. 

The Dakhina Moda ritual is held on the next day of Hera Panchami which is the sixth day of the annual sojourn of deities. 

As per the tradition, three Pujapanda servitors arrive at the chariots to perform the ritual with Agyan Mala or garland of the consent of the Lords. The chariot of Goddess Subhadra, Darpadalan, will be turned towards the south first. Then, it is followed by Lord Balabhadra’s Taladhwaja and at the end, Jagannath’s Nandighosh will be turned south. Following the ritual, the chariots will be kept near Nakachana Dwara, the eastern gate of Gundicha Temple.

Yesterday, Goddess Lakhmi dismantled Nandighosh Rath as part of Hera Panchami tradition.

Senior servitor Sarat Mohanty said, “A woman has always differences with her sister-in-law. However, Goddess Subhadra is an exception. After Hera Panchami ritual, Goddess Subhadra asks both of her brothers to return home and console Goddess Lakhmi. Both Jagannath and Balabhadra agree to it and give their consent to turn the chariot southward.”

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