Cuttack: The first logs of wood to be used in the construction of chariots for the world-famous Rath Yatra (Car Festival) in Puri was sliced in Government Sawmill at Khapuria here on Thursday on the auspicious occasion of Ram Navami.
As per the tradition, ceremonial initiation of cutting of logs for chariots to be used during the Puri Rath Yatra began after receiving ‘Agyan Mala’ from Puri Srimandir.
The sliced logs will be used to build the three chariots – Nandighosa of Lord Jagannath, Taladhwaja of Lord Balabhadra and Darpadalan of Devi Subhadra. The timbers are then shaped into the three chariots used by the Trinity in Puri.
The employees here complete the slicing for the scheduled day for the commencement of construction work for the three chariots.
The tradition of cutting of the timber at the OFDC Sawmill at Khapuria has been continuing for over a decade under the supervision of carpenters of the Puri Jagannath Temple.
As per the rituals, 865 logs are used for the construction of the three chariots. While some are sliced at Khaupuria Sawmill, the rest are sliced and prepared at the Ratha Khala in Puri.
After all the logs are assembled, the chariot construction work will begin on Akshaya Tritiya, the third day of the bright half of the lunar Vaisakh month in the Hindu calendar.