Bhubaneswar: The Lords of Jagannath Temple also celebrate the sibling bond and follow the ritual of tying the sacred thread on Raksha Bandhan.
According to tradition, Patara Bisoi servitors prepare ‘Pata Rakhi’ which Devi Subhadra ties to Lord Balabhadra and Lord Jagannath. It is a blue and purple rakhi for the older sibling and a red and yellow for the younger one. The Lords are also offered ‘Guamala’ (garland of areca nuts).
The temple administration provides ‘Basunga Pata’ cloth to the servitors for preparing the rakhis. They cut the coloured cloths and sew them in concentric circles one atop another with the lowest disc being the largest. The preparations, along with that of 54 areca nuts necklaces, begins from Chitalagi Amabasya.
The Raksha Bandhan in Odisha is known as Gamha Purnima. According to the Purana Sastra, Lord Balabhadra, who is considered the lord of farmers, was born on this day. All rituals concerning Him are conducted in the temple.
After the rituals of ‘Madhyana Dhupa’, ‘Bije Niti’ of Lord Balabhadra, Madana Mohana, Bhu Devi and Shri Devi are held at Jhulana Mandap in the temple.
“On Raksha Bandhan, a sister ties Rakhi, the thread of protection, to her brother. Devi Subhadra also ties Rakhi to Lord Jagannath and Balabhadra. The Rakhi, made by the Patara community, for Lord Jagannatha is the biggest in the world,” said Shri Jagannatha Sanskruti researcher Suryanarayan Rathasharma.
He also informed about Shadha Jayanti ritual commemorating the birth ceremony of Lord Balabhadra. The day also witnesses ‘Maha Snana’, ‘Sarbanga Chandana Lagi’, ‘Nutana Vastra Paridhana’ and ‘Sashti Markandi puja’.
It is also celebrated as an agricultural festival and rakhis are tied to cattle, too.