06 July, Puri
The trinity of Jagannath temple were escorted into the sanctum sanctorum of the temple tonight in pahandi procession from their chariot and installed on the Ratnasimhasan by the Daita servitors amid two layers of security cordon. The tight security was made around the deities to prevent touching of deities by unauthorized persons
The priests performed Mangala arati, Abakash and offered fruits as bhog to deities on the three chariots. After Sandhya Dhupa preparation for pahandi began with fixing of ladders (chara-mara) onto the chariots and onto the Ratnasimhasan in the Garbhagruha of the temple. Ceremonial “Pahandi procession” was conducted two hours in advance by 1640 hours than the fixed schedule of 1830 hours amidst traditional temple musicians playing cymbals, trumpets, ghantas, drums and bugles to conventional musical notes while Gotipua and Odishi dancers led the procession. Madan Mohan and Ramakrushna were first taken into the temple followed by Sudarshan, Balabhadra, sister Subhadra and in the end lord Jagannath.
A traditional play was enacted between the servitors of lord Jagannath and his consort Mahalaxmi. By the order of Mahalaxmi the temple gate was closed to prevent entry of lord Jagannath to teach him a lesson for not taking Mahalaxmi in the nine day pleasure trip to sri Gundicha temple. Mahalaxmi maintains a close vigil from Chahani mandop (a projected platform situated at the right side of the temple main gate) on the activities on the Nandighosh ratha. While the lord Balabhadra and Devi Subhadra were allowed to enter the temple the door was slammed on the face of lord Jagannath. Lord then offers Mahalaxmi rasgullas to appease her and to forgive him. After a long persuasion she allows him inside. This home coming of the deities is popularly called “Niladri Bije”.
Taking clue from the lord Jagannath hundreds of devotees offered rosgullas as bhog to deities on chariots before Pahandi. This was the only occasion when rosgulla was offered to the deities. Regular nitees starting with Mahasnan (the grand bath) followed by a fresh set of nitees concluding with Badasinghar (night dress) and Pahuda (sleeping) would be observed. Devotees would get mahaprasad known as “Nilachal abhada” tomorrow.