Ratha Yatra, also known as rathayatra, rathajatra or chariot competition is any public procession in a chariot. The term especially refers to the annual rath yatra in Odisha, Jharkhand, West Bengal and other east Indian states, specifically the odia competition that contain a public procession with a chariot with deities Jagannath (Vishnu avatar), balabhadra (his brother), Subhadra (his sister) and Sudarshana chakra (his weapon) on a ratha. A timber doula-formed chariot. it draws over a million Hindu pilgrims who are part of the procession every year.

Rath Yatra
Rath Yatra

Triads are generally worshipped within the sanctum of the temple at Puri, however as soon as at some point of the month of Asadha (rainy season of Odisha, typically falling in month of June or July), they’re brought out onto the bada danda (foremost avenue of puri) and tour (3 km) to the Shri gundicha temple, in big chariots (ratha), allowing the public to have darśana (holy view). This competition is known as rath yatra, meaning the journey (yatra) of the chariots (ratha). the rathas are large wheeled wood systems, which can be constructed anew every year and are pulled by means of the devotees.

The chariot for Jagannath is approximately 45 feet excessive and 35 toes square and takes approximately 2 months to assemble. The artists and painters of puri decorate the automobiles and paint flower petals and different designs at the wheels, the wooden-carved charioteer and horses, and the inverted lotuses at the wall at the back of the throne. The big chariots of Jagannath pulled throughout rath yatra is the etymological origin of the English phrase juggernaut. The Ratha-yatra is also termed as the Shri gundicha yatra.

During the return Yatra, the Bahuda Yatra make a halt at the Mausi Maa Temple. Here the deities are served Poda Pitha, a sweet pancake. It is believed that this pancake is the poor man’s food and the Lord is fond of it.

Jagannath Rath Yatra or the Chariot festival is known to be one of the oldest and also the grandest procession festival, which is celebrated every year in India. It also finds its mention in Puranas of Hinduism such as Padma Puran, Brahma Puran and Skanda Puran.

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