Annual Rath Yatra begins; Amit Shah offers prayers at Lord Jagannath Temple
Ahmedabad, July 04: Home Minister Amit Shah and his wife Sonal Shah offered prayers at the 450-year-old Jagannath Temple in Gujarat's Ahmedabad during the Mangal Aarti, ahead of the annual Gujarat Jagannath Rath Yatra.
The world-famous Rath Yatra is among the most celebrated festivals in India in which the Jagannath temple deities are taken out in their chariots which are pulled in a traditional ceremony by thousands of people towards Gundicha temple and then back to the main Jagannath temple.
Jagannath Rath Yatra is organised at Puri in Odisha. It is believed that Lord Jagannath every year wishes to visit his birthplace. This 10-day festival has begins from July 4.
Besides the three chariots, the rath yatra procession comprised 19 decorated elephants, 100 trucks with tableaux and members of 30 singing troupes.
The rath yatra is taken out every year on Ashadhi Beej, the second day of Ashadh month, as per the Hindu calender.
The procession will return to the temple around 8.30 pm after passing through the Old City, including some communally sensitive areas like Jamalpur, Kalupur, Shahpur and Dariyapur.
A multi-layered security cordon involving 25,000 personnel from different police units and para-military forces has been put in place. CCTVs and drone cameras are being used to keep a watch on the procession.