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regular-article-logo Monday, 15 July 2024

Snanyatra venue shifted from the Iskcon temple to Nazrul Mancha, a public venue

Snanyatra, a ritual held a fortnight ahead of Rathyatra, will take place away from Iskcon temple for the first time in recent memory

Sudeshna Banerjee Calcutta Published 21.06.24, 06:22 AM
The Snanyatra in 2023

The Snanyatra in 2023

Nazrul Mancha will witness an unusual sight on Saturday. The idols of Lord Jagannath and his siblings will be bathed on the stage where musicians, dancers and orators usually perform.

Snanyatra, a ritual held a fortnight ahead of Rathyatra, will take place at a public venue away from the Iskcon temple for the first time in recent memory.

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“We used to hold the Snanyatra at our Gurusaday Road office courtyard. But it is so hot this year that we decided on an air-conditioned venue where all our disciples will fit. Nazrul Mancha can accommodate 2,000-plus people," said Radharaman Das, vice-president of Iskcon, Calcutta.

For the bathing ritual, the idols are placed on a lotus-shaped seat under which a huge container is placed. Two drums of panchamrita (water of the Ganges, milk, fruit juices, curd, ghee etc) are poured, which yields about 150 litres of charanamrita. It will be distributed among disciples.

In many cities in the west, the ritual takes place in an auditorium, like Moscow. “Snanyatra in Calcutta started in 1972, along with our Rathyatra. The ritual has not been held in a public auditorium like this in at least the past 25 years, if not ever,” Das said.

The three-hour ritual will start at 5pm on Saturday.

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