The entire Banajaga Yatra team comprising Daitapatis, Swotriya Brahmins, Biswakarmas and others began their journey from Deuli Mutt near Kakatpur to Gadakuntunia in Khurda district to get the ‘Daru’ for Sudarshan on Tuesday morning and reached the spot in evening. The Banajaga Yatra team would now stay at the ‘Sabarpalli’ near the spot.
The Daitapatis of the team will perform the ‘ankuraropan’ ritual to purify the ‘daru’ with 108 pots of holy water. After ankuraropan, the next ritual called barana ritual (reception with utmost respect) of the tree will take place. On Wednesday night the mandals for the yagna, kalash etc. will be readied in the yagna griha.
The ‘daru’ will then be draped in a cloth and the ‘ajnamala’ obtained from Lord Sudarshan in Puri temple will be offered to the tree. After receipt of agyanmala from the Shree Jagannath Temple, yagna will start from the April 16th morning. The ‘maha yagna’ will continue for three days after which the cutting of the daru will take place.
The tree will be first touched by gold and silver axes before being felled using iron axes. Locals after having havishyanna at their homes and dressing in new clothes, the local people can volunteer for participation in the chopping of the tree. Once the cutting is over, the log will be carried on a sagadi (cart) prepared from wood either of tendu, tamarin or banayan tree to Puri. The daru (log) will be placed on the sagadi draped in seven layers of covering and will be tied with silk ropes made available from the Shree Mandir. People using these ropes will drag the sagadi to Puri to the sounds of gongs, conches and trumpets
The Banajaga Yatra team will move in the ‘sagadi’ (bullock cart) with the daru to Puri on April 20. The members of Banajaga team, who would accompany the ‘Daru’ to Puri, would not join the team which will go in search of the ‘Daru’ for Lord Balabahadra’s idol. Location of the Neem trees for the Trinity will be announced one after another by the SJTA in next few weeks.
Suresh Mohapatra, chief administrator of the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA), said the place of the yagna had been sanctified. “The entire place has been barricaded and public would not be allowed into the yagna area,” he said. After taking stock of the security arrangements at the place, DGP Sanjeev Marik said that adequate number of security personnel have been deployed to maintain law and order.