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Odisha CM Patnaik inaugurates building for 'habisialis' women coming to state

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Puri, Oct 11: With the beginning of the holy month of Kartik, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik inaugurated the "Brundabati Nivas" for the lodging of 'habisialis', women who undergo religious activities during the month.

The 'habisialis' are mostly widows and come from most parts of the state and also from neighbouring states, to perform Kartik Brata' in Lord Jagannath Dham during the 'Kartik' month, according to Indian calendar.

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik

Keeping in view the difficulties faced by elderly women in Puri, Patnaik had earlier announced to set up the "Brundabati Nivas".

The seven storied Brundabati Niwas, having 118 rooms is spread over four acres of land in Puri town. It was constructed at a cost of Rs 39 crore, official sources said, adding that the building can accommodate 1,600 habisialis.

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While Patnaik inaugurated the facility through virtual mode on Monday, some ministers were present at the venue on the occasion. Seeking blessings of 'habisialis', Patnaik said that each 'habisialis' will be provided with a shawl during the winter.

Officials said that the state government has made lodging, food and transport arrangements for the 'habisialis' at Puri.

Apart from Brundabati Niwas, arrangements have also been made at the Bagala Dharmasala, Bagedia Dharmasala and Mochi Sahi Kalyana Mandapa for lodging of the 'habisalis'.

The district administration of Puri has also made proper arrangements for the 'habisialis' for worship, darshan of the deities, bhajan, kirtan, spiritual discussion and Mahaprasad intaking.

On the day one of the kartik month, the habisialis take vow (Sankalpa) and will start the 'Kartika brata'. They will offer their prayer to Raidamodar (Lord Krishna and Radha) near Tulasi (sacred plant) chaura and will continue this brata for one month.

Shree Jagannatha Temple Administration (SJTA) administration as well as the district administration has made special arrangements for Kartik month.

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Officials said that as many as, 2,935 'habisalis' are staying in five centres arranged by the Puri district administration.

The Raidamodar or Radha-Krishna puja and 'habisa brata' will continue till November 8.

There was much enthusiasm among the 'habisialis' as they are able to hold Kartik Brata at Puri after a gap of two years after reduction in the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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