Puri: Pulling of chariots of Lord Jagannath and his siblings, which had to be stopped midway after sunset on Rath Yatra yesterday, resumed at 9.30 am today.
Braving rains, thousands of devotees turned up on the Badadanda to pull the chariots. The Taladhwaja Rath of Lord Balabhadra was pulled first followed by two others.
While Taladhwaja was halted near Balagandi, Darpadalana of Goddess Subhadra and Nandighosa of Lord Jagannath were stopped near Bagala Dharmasala and Town police station, respectively, yesterday. The three chariots will reach Gundicha temple today and will remain for nine days. Hundreds of devotees have turned up on the Badadanda to offer prayer to the deities on Chariots this morning.
It may be mentioned here that the Pahandi rituals of the Trinity was delayed by an hour on Rath Yatra yesterday. Pulling of chariots, the eagerly-awaited moment for all the devotees, began at 3:54 pm, after the Chhera Panhara by Gajapati Dibyasingha Deb.
As per tradition, the Taladhwaja Rath was pulled first, followed by Debadalana and and Nandighosha. As per official reports, the deities will enter the Gundicha temple after completion of several rituals tomorrow.
Meanwhile, the issue of touching of deities has snowballed into a controversy with Sri Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) reiterating for stern action against those found guilty.
“We will examine the CCTV footage after the Rath Yatra festival and steps will be taken to identify persons for appropriate action,” said SJTA chief administrator Pradip Jena.
However, a group of servitors have also moved Orissa High Court for allowing devotees to touch the deities during Pahandi.
“With devotion, some people have touched the deities and it is not a big crime during pahandi,” said Joint Secretary Daitapati Nijog Binay DasMohapatra.