Jagatisinghpur, October 17( Odisha.in) ‘Danda Yatara’ during Dushera festival at Sarala temple has special attraction to the devotees in which thousands of devotees have thronged around this temple to witness this festival .
The famous 7th century Sarala temple of Kanakapur of Jagatisinghpur district wears a new look during Dusehra festival.
Sarala Peeth is considered as one of the oldest Shakti peeth in the state. As per legend, Astabhuja Devi Sarala was being established by Lord Parsuram. Out of eight hands ( Astabhuja) Devi Sarla has used six hands to catch the hire of demon ‘Mahisasur’, Trisul,Khadaga, Padama, Chakra,swoard and used other two hands to catch layer and ‘Sastra'( scriptures) .
It is rare to see such Goddess not only in Orissa but in India. So devotees has not only worshiped Devi Sarala as Goddess Durga but to worship as Bagadevi Swarswati.
Researcher cum acting Chairman of Zilla Sanskruti Parishad Mr Kulamani Dash , claimed that the tradition of Durga Puja in Sarala peeth dates back to 7th century A.D. This festival is one of the major festival in this peeth. Different Besa (to wear colorful sarees and ornaments) are being performed on this occasion.
Devi Sarla’s is offered bael and basil leaves daily. Besides this, ‘Sodasa’ puja (to worship by sixteen of items) is being performed during Durga puja in which Manda Pitha( cake) is a special attraction for the Devi .
As per rituals, Sodasa puja, Chandipatha, Ahauti, has performed in this temple. After these rituals, Godess Sarla leaves her throne and moves from village to village by a ‘Biman’which is called as Danda Yatra.
This Danda Yatra was observed from 11th to 16th October in which Devi visited Pacheri Kana, Matha, Gopa, Behtaghat and lastly visited Nadadeula at Bada Sarola village where Devi was worshiped earlier.
‘Suna Besa’ was performed every night while all devotees witnessed this rare Besa or copstume as they believe that one who have darshan in this costume gets salvation. During Danda Yatra , village roads are spruced with colour lights , bahjans, kirtans and ‘ patua’ and conch dance by singing songs and music’s.
Thousands of people from different places of Orissa thronged this peeth to enjoy Danda Yatra. Similarly, Kalika dance is also another attraction during this festival.
After Danda Yatra, Devi wears Mahisasura Besa on Sasthi, Saptmi and Mahastami puja in temple and Sandhi Puja is performed on Nabami day.Immersion of ‘Kalasi’ is performed at chandan pokahri ( pond) on the Day of Dushera . District administration has made elaborate arrangements for smooth celebration of this festival.