Nanjangud, Mar. 27 (RS&SH)-More than one lakh devotees took part in the annual Nanjangud Doddajathre in the temple town here this morning. The event began with worship to the deity of Lord Ganesha that had been mounted on one of the five rathas before daybreak in the auspicious Shubha Meena lagna.
The devotees then pulled the Ganesha Ratha. Following mahamangalarathi to the deity of Lord Srikanteshwara mounted on 90-foot tall Gauthama Ratha at 6.30 am, devotees pulled the Ratha in an orderly manner as it moved along the customary route around the temple, covering the main thoroughfares.
The devotees sang praises of the lord and cries of 'Jai Srikanta, Jai Nanjunda' rent the air for that is how the presiding deity of the town is known to them. The main Ratha, part of the Panchamaharathas featured in the festival, followed by Rathas devoted to Goddess Parvathi, Lord Subramanya and Lord Chandikeshwara and pulled by the devotees with the help of ropes, returned to the starting point in front of the temple at 7.50 am. The other three Rathas also reached the starting point at 8.40 am.
All the Rathas were decorated with colourful flowers, saffron flags, jingling bells and buntings. The Rathas did not experience any glitches along the route unlike the incident a few years ago when one of the wheels of Gauthama Ratha had caved in on its route. The wheels of all the Rathas had been renovated and strengthened on the eve of this year's festival. The festival itself is being held on a scale similar to Panchalinga Darshana at Talkad a few months ago. The Government had sanctioned one crore rupees for the festival which had been given wide publicity.
Grand arches had been erected at the entry points of important roads of the town, the Temple premises and also along riverside, with decorations of special effect lighting, making the town look like a new bride. The team of temple priests performed the customary rituals and distributed prasadam to the devotees. More than 100 religious institutions and voluntary organisations including Sri Srikanteshwara Seva Sangha, Bangalore, Doddaballapura Sri Srikanteshwara Seva Sangha and Nanjangud Brahmana Seva Sangha offered laddu, food, butter milk and panaka (juice) to the devotees.
KSRTC had arranged free bus services to the devotees from different points of the town to the temple. Railways had arranged special train services to Nanjangud from Friday. No incident of crime or disturbance was reported on the day of the festival.
Officers and staff of various departments of the State Government worked like a team in making the event a memorable one for the devotees who have come from far and near. They were provided with all comforts and conveniences including safe drinking water, toilets, cloakrooms etc. Hoteliers were directed to supply boiled water to customers.
A posse of Police guided by Deputy Superintendent Rajagopal and Circle Inspector Pramod Kumar, Town Sub-Inspector Lakshmikanth Talwar and staff kept vigil.
Ramachandra Gowda, Minister for Medical Education, MP Dhruvanarayana, MLA V. Sreenivasa Prasad, Town Municipal President N. Srinivas, Mysore Zilla Panchayat President Dharmendra, BJP leader Mahadevaiah, Superintendent of Police Rama Subba, Assistant Commissioner Bharathi, newly appointed temple executive officer Anuradha, Tahsildar K.M. Suresh Kumar and other prominent persons of the town took part in the jathra.
The concluding part of the Doddajathre, namely Theppotsava (floating ceremony) in Kapila river will be held on Monday, Mar. 29 at 7 pm.
Courtesy : Star Of Mysore