America’s Largest Hindu Temple hosts Car Festival

Minneapolis: The largest Hindu temple of United States of America hosted the Car Festival of the Biggest God of the universe amidst pomp and splendour. Situated at the city of Mapple Grove, in the state of Minnesota, the Gigantic temple is the abode of Supreme God Lord Jagannath, His elder brother Lord Balabhadra, Goddess Subhadra and Lord Sudarshan. Commencing from the wee hours of the Rath Yatra day all the religious rituals were  performed in a solemn and simple manner under the guidance of Head Priest Murali Bhatter. At about 11 a.m. in the morning four deities were taken in Pahandi procession to the aesthetically and colourfully decorated chariot. The entire atmosphere got reverberated  with the recitals of hymns, roaring of slogans like haribol and Jai Jagannath, sounding of Hulahuli, blowing of conch and playing of musical instruments such as Ghanta, Kartala, Mardala, Jhanja and Mrudanga. The highlight of the Celebration was the Pahandi Bije of Goddess Subhadra being performed exclusively by Ladies. Chairman of The Temple’s managing body Hindu Society of Minnesota (HSMN), Founder of Hindu temple and Renowned scientist Dr. Sitakantha Dash conducted the traditional service of sweeping on the chariots called ‘chherapahanra’. Earlier Dr. Dash’s wife poetess Kalpana Dash joined with him on the chariot for seeking blessings from the Lord of the Universe. About 1000 devotees  participated in the ceremony and had a Holy Darshan of Dieties from the chariot.  Amidst the devotional renderings of Kirtan, recitals of Bhajans, Jananas, the chariot was pulled to the Newly built Gundicha Temple.  The deities will remain at their Aunt’s House till Niladri Bije on 18th July 2021.The special attraction of the Ceremony was the presentation of a vibrant cultural programme consisting of Odissi and Sambalpuri dance recitals by the Odia community members. Recognition mementos were presented to the projects heads of the HSMN for their commendable performances during the evening function. Distinguished dignitaries present on the occasion were, Mapple Grove city’s Rotary Club President Raj Khankari, President of India Association of Minnesota,  Kiran Bindi,  Guests from Bhubhaneswar Prataprudra Das, Baijayantimala Das and Professor of  University of Minnesota Dr. Ramaiha. The entire arrangement was neatly executed and well managed by the active and able stewardships of HSMN’s Chairman Dr. Sitakantha Dash and President Pooja Bastodkar.