Rare “Nagarjuna Besha” Begins

Puri: Nagarjuna Besha of Lord Jagannath is happening after 26 years, is being held today at Puri Srimandir.

This celebration of Nagarjuna Besha is special since it is observed only in those years where the ‘panchuka’, the last five days of the holy month of Karthika, is observed for six days. This event is to happen after a lapse of 26 years. It was earlier observed on November, 26, 1963, November 26, 1966, November 16, 1967 and November 3, 1968. The last Nagarjuna Besha celebration was observed on November 16, 1994.

It is learnt that this Nagarjuna Besha celebration commemorates the slaying of Shahasrajuna by Parasurama.

Puri district administration on Thursday night imposed Section 144 of the CrPC in several parts of the city to stop possible congregation of crowds in front of the temple.

Puri sub-collector Bhabataran Sahu said as there is a possibility of a congregation of lakhs of devotees around the shrine during the Nagarjuna Besha; it was decided to hold all the rituals by the servitors only. Sahu said restrictions will be clamped on the stretch from Marichikot square in the city till the Singhadwar of the temple and around the temple.

Devotees missed out on witnessing Nagarjuna Besha of the Trinity in Sri Jagannath temple this year due to restrictions induced by the COVID pandemic.

There will be no live telecast of the event as well. The proposal to telecast the ritual online was dismissed at the meeting on the ground that it is against tradition.