Puri: A day after Suna Besha, when the sibling deities glittered in golden attire, huge pots filled with sweet drink are carried onto the three chariots as offerings.
This interesting ritual of Adhara Pana, which literally translates as Adhara – Lip and Pana – Juice, is performed on Asadha Sukla Pakhya Dwadashi.
During the ritual, the terracotta pots are placed on each chariots parked near the Lion Gate’s of the 12th century shrine. These reach up to the Lords’ lips.
The pots contain 100 litres of a mixture of milk cream, cheese, sugar, banana, camphor, nutmeg, black pepper and other such spices. These are then broken to liberate the souls/spirits and other invisible beings residing in the chariots.
The refreshment is only for the Gods and Goddesses, who stayed on the chariots during Rath Yatra to guard Lord Jagannath, Devi Subhadra and Lord Balabhadra which is why they are known as ‘Rath Rakhyak’. Devotees are forbidden to partake it.
The potters maintain utmost hygiene and follow food restrictions while preparing these pots. Women are not allowed to touch these pots.