Thursday, 18 July 2013

Jagannath Rath Yatra

Anything that is easily accessible seems worthless. It is human nature. But once we realize that we are deprived of it, we start craving for it. Such has happened with me or rather I would say us because it is about majority of our community people residing in Kolkata far away from our motherland.

We, the Bishnupriya Manipuris, are a small community from the north eastern part of India residing mainly in the states of Manipur, Assam, Meghalaya and Tripura. We are so small that most of the people of our country even do not know that we survive in this country. We being the followers of Lord Vishnu, considered Rath Yatra as one of our most important festivals. 

But far from our native land we started feeling deprived from our culture which was otherwise never so important. As such few of the community people met and decided that Rath Yatra would be celebrated in Kolkata by us in a small way. It was in the year 2004 that we the Bishnupriya Manipuri community started celebrating Rath Yatra in Kolkata. Today, the celebration that started from the drawing room of a relative, reached the main roads of Kolkata, facing many topsy-turvy situations. 

This year too on the 10th of July, we celebrated the festival in a very colorful way in accordance to our customs and rituals.

The deities (Balabhadra, Subhadra, Jagganath) are dressed in new colorful attires before taking to the chariot(rath)

The deities were placed on the chariot and Arti(pooja) is being performed before starting the ride

After the pooja the chariot is pulled with the help of the rope attached to the chariot. Pulling the chariot is regarded auspicious

The drummers and singers lead the rath singing various devotional songs

The devotional songs of the singers were mesmerizing which attracted lots of passers by who followed the chariot 



At places the artists performed various items that were of attraction to all

Finally travelling a distance of about 2 kms the chariot reached the destination where the main puja and the programs were to take place

The Chariot (Rath) with our society banner

Our priest ready to take the deities inside

The deities placed in the Ashana(throne/altar) 

The priests performs the puja

Devotional songs and slokas being chanted



The drummers ready to perform

One of the drummers showing his skill using three drums

Akanksha performing the manjira nartan

The ladies in traditional attires getting ready for the Das Avatar song which is performed by the devotees present there clapping their hands on the beats of the drums moving in a circular motion


After all the performances were over, all the devotees were served with the Khidchi Prasadam.   

11 comments :

  1. Hello Ranita! Thank you so much for your kind visit. I know exactly how you feel. I felt the same way when I moved to the continental U.S. from Hawaii. There was so much I took for granted. Your celebration looks like so much fun! It's such fun to see your photos.

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    1. Thanks Kay for for your lovely words..Feeling nice after such a long gap to see you visit my blog..

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  2. Hey Ranita great to see you back!! And what a beautiful post with beautiful images and wonderful commentary!
    Hope to see you blogging regularly now!!

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    1. Hey Deepak! Thanks a lot for your wonderful words..Will try to be regular now onwards..thanks for ur visit..

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  3. Ranita Ba, Welcome back.Great to read your new post ,Nice photos,Thanks for sharing. Keep blogging :)

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  4. You have captured all the details of the celebration. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thanks a lot Ranjana for liking..

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  5. Excellent post with lovely photographs, Ranita!
    Ranita, I'm a new visitor on your blog. just, you have a lovely account. you're most welcome on my account.

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  6. Very interesting post, thank you Ranita. It is always a wonderful thing to learn about another way of life and I have enjoyed learning about yours. Wishing you a great weekend :)

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  7. padke bahut accha laga...........soft and smooth...........

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