Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

The last auspicious five days of holy Odia month ‘Kartika’ is known as Pachuka which started in Odisha today.

As per the popular beliefs, those who are unable to observe fast throughout Kartika month can keep fast during the last five days of the month and this will give them the benefit of the whole month. During the period of Panchuka, most people in Odisha abstain from non-vegetarian foods.

As per the tradition, five special attires of Lord Jagannath take place in Puri during this period. The first day of Panchuka is known as ‘Bada Ekadashi’ and on this occasion, Lord Jagannath dons Laxmi Narayan attire. After ‘Abakasha Niti’, the Holy Trinity will give darshan to the devotees at Srimandir by wearing ‘Patabastra’, special ornaments and garlands made with attractive flowers.

Devotees throng Dhabaleswar temple in large numbers to observe PanchukaDevotees throng the Dhabaleswar temple in large numbers to observe Panchuka

Similarly, Lord Jagannath and His sibling deities Lord Balabhadra and Goddess Subhadra dons ‘Bankachuda besha’ in ‘Dwadashi’ (second day of Panchuka), ‘Tribikrama Besha’ in ‘Trayodashi’ (third day of Panchuka), ‘Laxmi Nursingha Behsa’ in ‘Chaturdashi’ (fourth day of Panchuka) and ‘Rajarajeshwar Besha’ or golden attire in ‘Kartika Purnima’ (last day of Panchuka).

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Keeping in view the possibility of a huge rush during the five days of Panchuka rituals, the Puri district administration has made elaborate arrangements for crowd and traffic management. As many as 30 platoons of police force will be deployed in Puri to maintain law and order.  

All makeshift shops and street vending units along the stretch of the Bada Danda from the Srimandir to Marichikote Chhak have been shut while vehicular movement on the Grand Road has been restricted from Market Chhak. For the smooth darshan of the deities, barricades have been erected up to Marichikote Chhak. To ensure smooth darshan of elders and divyangs, volunteers have been engaged in three shifts.

Devotees throng Puri in large numbers to observe PanchukaDevotees throng Puri in large numbers to observe Panchuka

Meanwhile, in view of the influx of devotees at Dhabaleswar temple, the district administration has made special arrangements for the upcoming Bada Osha of Lord Shiva on Saturday. Popular ‘Gaja Bhoga’ and ‘Tarana’ will be offered to Lord Dhabaleswar amid ‘Trayodashi’ and ‘Chaturdashi’ tithi. Devotees complete their ‘Bada Osha’ and ‘Kartika Brata’ by taking ‘Gaja Bhoga’ and ‘Tarana’ of Lord Dhabaleswar.

On the first day of Panchuka, Lord Dhabaleswar is giving darshan to the devotees in ‘Chandramauli’ attire. The servitors opened the door of the temple at 3 am today. Following the ‘Snana’ of Lord Dhabaleswar with 108 pitchers of water and the performance of other rituals like ‘Mailama’ and ‘Mangala Alati’, thousands of devotees were allowed to have darshan of Lord Dhabaleswar.