Puri, Oct 15 (UNI) Thousands of devotees, mostly old and widows, have thronged this pilgrim city to observe the month-long ''Kartik brata'', which commenced from today.
The devotees used to take bath early in the morning and rush to Jagannath temple to witness Mangal arati and spend most of their time in chanting ''kartik mahatmya'' a religious text.
They would take one vegetarian meal a day (most of them depend on cooked mahaprasad from temple kitchen) and worship the holy Basil tree as the image of the lord.
Almost all the families in the holy city have devotee guests to observe the month-long brata.
As usual the temple administration had rescheduled the daily ''nitees and rituals'' of the presiding deities of Jagannath temple to facilitate devotees to have darshan.
Huge quantity of Mahaprasad are being cooked daily in special bhogs (offerings) to provide mahaprasad to a large number of devotees round the month.
The last five days of the month would draw more devotees who usually visit the temple to observe ''Panchuka'', considered to be the holiest days of the month.
The lords used to take five different new ''Veshas'' (attires) each day.
The ''Kartik brata'' would conclude on the ''Kartik purnima'' day with the devotees taking holy bath in ''Pancha teerth'' before darshan of the lord Jagannath.
UNI XC-DP SJC DB1859