Kartika Purnima celebrated with fervour across Odisha

Bhubaneswar: The holy month of Kartika ended with the historic festival of ‘Boita Bandana' on Sunday morning across the State. People from various age groups floated tiny boats in ponds, rivers and other water bodies to celebrate the auspicious 'Kartika Purnima'.

Thousands of people, among them women and children, gathered at different ghats of river Mahanadi, Kathajodi and Taladanda canal and participated in ‘Boita Bandana’ celebrations.

In state capital also enthusiastic devotees in large numbers went to the banks of Bindusagar tank and floated the miniature boats and offered pujas in nearby Lingaraj Temple.

Some also went to the nearby ponds and puddles to observe the rituals of the day in the early morning.

Similar crowds were seen in Puri. A large number of devotees also visited Sri Jagannath Temple to witness the golden avatar (Sunabesha) of deities.

The Boita Bandana celebrations were also held in Paradeep, Gopalpur and other parts of the state, said sources.

In ancient times, sea traders known as ‘sadhabas’, would begin their sea voyages on the full moon day of Kartika month of the Hindu calendar to the Indonesian island of Bali.

Though the days are now gone, people float tiny boats made out of cork and colour paper and perform the ritual ‘Boita Bandana’ (worshipping of voyage) every year to remember the past glory.

The celebrations would culminate with the inauguration of historic Baliyatra festival at the Baliyatra grounds in Cuttack, in front of the majestic Barabati fort.