Dakshina moda of chariots today

Bhubaneswar: All the three chariots parked outside the Gundicha temple will be turned around today to face the Jagannath temple. The ritual is called dakshina moda which marks the beginning of preparations for bahuda yatra (return car festival) falling on Sunday.

The first chariot to be turned around towards southern direction is Debadalana of Devi Subhadra following which Lord Balabhadra and Jagannath’s chariots will be turned.

“As per tradition, auspicious ceremonies are done with Goddess Subhadra’s blessings and so her chariot will be rotated first,” said a servitor.

After the dakshina moda ritual, the rahas ceremony of the deities will begin inside the Gundicha temple according to the traditional itinerary.

Earlier late last night, hera panchamai ritual was observed. On this occasion, Goddess Lakshmi, wife of Lord Jagannath, who is in anger for not being taken along with the deities during the Rath Yatra, pays a visit to Him at the Gundicha temple and request him to return to the Jagannath temple.

As a reply, Lord Jagannath gives an agyan mala (a garland of consent) which the goddess carries on her way back to her temple.

As per tradition, servitors of Goddess Lakhsmi break a part of the chariot of Lord Jagannath which is known as ratha bhanga neeti.

“As the Goddess is upset about the fact that her husband left her behind and went on a vacation with his siblings, she wishes to show her anger. After breaking a portion of the chariot, her idol is first carried to a tamarind tree outside the Gundicha temple behind which she hides for some time. Then she is carried to the Jagannath temple through a secret passage in the Hera Gohri Lane to avoid any fuss because of the attack on the chariot,” said a servitor.