Over 1 Lakh Devotees Throng Tara Tarini Temple In Odisha’s Ganjam On Last Day Of Chaitra Festival

Sunil Patnaik

Berhampur: More than 7 lakh devotees visited Tara Tarini temple in Odisha’s Ganjam district during five-day Chaitra festival which concluded on Tuesday.

More than one lakh devotees thronged the 17th century shrine despite scorching heat to participate in the festival on the final day. Pramod Kumar Panda, member of the Tara Tarini Temple Trust Board and secretary of Tara Tarini Temple Development Board (TTTDB) said all the rituals of the temple’s deity and functions of the festival ended without any disturbances.

The festival, which is held every Tuesday of Hindu month of Chaitra (March to April) every year, was started on March 26. Subsequently, it was held on April 2, 9, 16 and 23. On first day of the festival, around one lakh devotees visited the shrine, 2.5 lakh on second day, one lakh on third day and 1.5 lakh on fourth day, sources said.

Devotees from across Odisha and outside including Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Assam, New Delhi and other states visited the temple to participate in the month-long weekly festival and seek blessings of the presiding deity.

About 20 thousand children accompanied by their parents performed ‘Mundan’ (tonsuring) at five places on the foothills. Total 625 barbers were deployed by the Temple Board for the purpose, said Pramod Kumar Panda, secretary, TTTDB.

The door of the historic temple was opened to the devotees for the darshan of Goddesses Tara Tarini at 6.30 am on the last day. Sanjay Kumar Singh, principal Secretary, RD and I&PR department was the first among the public to have darshan and offer prayer.

Elaborate arrangements were made by the RWSS for the devotees who visited the shrine. Drinking water facilities were provided at the bus stops on the foothills and the hilltop, the ropeway destinations and the Mundan spots, officials said.

The Taratarini Hill Shrine, considered as “Stana Peetha” (breast shrine) of Mata Sati, is one of 4 major ancient Shakti centres in India. With an uninterrupted history of 6000 years, it is emerging as a popular destination of visitors to Odisha.

Sunil Patnaik

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