On 13th July we celebrated our fourth Rathya Yatra in Ujjain.
The day started with Mangal arati in the presence of over a hundred college
students who had come from various cities of the state plus all the
congregational devotees in Ujjain. After the rousing kirtan a message was
read out from our beloved Guru Maharaj who regretted not being able to
attend this year’s function but encouraged all of us to work in a united
manner and make the Rathya yatra a grand success.
Stimulated by Guru Maharaj’s encouragement and meticulous planning by the
Rathya yatra team led by H.G.Laxminath das it turned to be a very wonderful
The Rath which is mounted on a truck chassis was renovated and a fresh coat
of paint was applied and taken to Budbaria the busy business district of
Ujjain from where the journey would commence.
Lord Jaganath, Lord Baladev and Mother Subhadra arrived and were
ceremoniously enthroned on the chariot with traditional arati and other
traditional puja which were performed by the pujaris.
Several dignitaries including the inspector general of police plus Sadhus of
the Ujjain dham presided over the opening ceremony.
After offering of arati by the dignitaries they broke the auspicious coconut
and then swept the ground with the traditional golden broom. Then the
matagi’s on one side and the Prabhu’s held on to the sacred rope and started
pulling the wonderfully decorated Rath.
Slowly Their Lordships started to majestically move down the narrow streets
of the city with the chanting of the holy name. Hundreds of onlookers on
both sides of the road joined the festivities showering flower petals at
several points along the road. Local people distributed cold water, fruit
juice and sweets to the onlookers. Several times along the route bhog was
offered to Lord Jaganath and was then freely distributed among the
We had an elephant leading the procession with one devotee carrying Srila
Prabhupada seated on top and two camels and five horses followed. Four very
nicely decorated bullock carts carried attractively dressed little children.
Also a band party played various tunes of the mahamantra plus devotees
constantly danced to the kirtan sung by several devotees.
The sun played hide and seek with the clouds but it did not rain thus
devotees thoroughly enjoyed the seven kilometer trek.
Around 6.30pm Their Lordship finally arrived at the temple where the
collector of the district offered arati and finally the devotees fondly
carried the deities to the specially prepared alter where they will reside
for the next eight days.
All the devotees were then treated to a sumptuous and delicious feast
arranged by H.G.Radhavallav das and attended by nearly three thousand
Please visit the under mentioned link for pictures of the memorable