Date Announced For Installing ‘Subha Khunti’ For Thakurani Yatra In Berhampur

Berhampur: Preparations for the famous biennial Thakurani Yatra commenced after traditional astrologer Vemgagoti Vasudeva Sastry Sidhanti fixed the auspicious ‘muhurta’ (time) for installing the ‘Subha Khunti’ (auspicious post) between 11 pm and 2 am on March 19.


Patarla Durga Prasad Desibehera, chief organiser of the yatra, said the Subha Khunti or an auspicious seven-feet bamboo pillar would be erected in front of the residence of Patarla Durga Prasad Desibehera at Desi Behera Sahi as the first step for constructing a temporary thatched house for the deity. Buddhi Thakurani is considered to be the daughter of the Desibehera and the deity stays with her father’s family during the entire yatra period.

The yatra is generally celebrated by people here with much pomp and gaiety. But this year, the COVID-19 restrictions have cast shadow on the yatra for which the date is yet to be announced.

According to sources, within 7 days of erecting the Subha Khunti, the priest, organisers of the yatra and the district administration will hold a meeting to decide the dates of start and conclusion of the yatra.

Buddhi Thakurani of Berhampur or Goddess Mahamayee is venerated as much as Biraja in Jajpur, Bhagabati in Banapur and Kataka Chandi in Cuttack. Thakurani Yatra in its ancient form is similar to ‘Ghata Yatra’ or the pots festival of south India.

According to historians, Raja Saheb of Mahuri visited Tanjore and Rajmahendri after Ganjam came under the imperial authority of the British in 1766-67. He invited the Telugu ‘Lengayat Dera’ (or weaver) community to migrate to his Mahuri estate and take up weaving and also introduce Ghata Yatra so as to highlight the divinity of Mahamayee Thakurani, the reigning deity of his capital city Berhampur. The chief of the Dera community, Kota Chandramani Kubera Senapati, led his people to Mahuri.

While pursuing their hereditary profession of weaving tussar products or patta matha, they introduced Ghata Yatra to worship Thakurani as well as to make it a platform for promoting silk products.

Record reveals that the Dera community settled in 18 settlements in the western part of Berhampur. The chief of each settlement was designated senapati. A supreme chief, or Desi Behera, was elected from among all senapatis to supervise the puja in the main temple of Buddhi Thakurani and oversee the conduct of the yatra. Buddhi Thakurani came to be regarded as the presiding deity of the Telugu-speaking Deras.

Get real time updates directly on you device, subscribe now.

Comments are closed.