Puri: Potters at Kumbharpada here have prepared special clay pots for Adharapana ritual of Srimandir deities scheduled to be performed July 24.
As per Srimandir tradition, Lord Jagannath and his siblings Lord Balabhadra and Devi Subhadra are offered Adharapana (a delicious drink) on their respective chariots near the 12th century shrine’s Lions’ Gate two days after the Bahuda Yatra (return Car Festival).
Customarily, the deities are offered the drink in three cylindrical pots, with the height of the lips of the idols, each on the chariots. The pots are smashed on the chariots, so that the drink can spill freely.
“It is believed that the ghostly bodies, descended on the Holy City to witness the Rath Yatra, return to their places after relishing the drink. However, human beings are forbidden to drink Adharapana,” said a researcher on Jagannath Culture.
In the past, the temple authorities were requiring 12 clay pots to offer Adharpana to the Srimandir Trinity and a few of their representative deities for three days starting from the day of Bahuda Yatra. However, the practice was abandoned subsequently. Now, servitors are offering altogether nine pots of Adharapana to the deities two days after the Bahuda Yatra, said heritage expert Surendra Kumar Mishra.
Traditionally, the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration and the authorities of Raghab Das mutt and Badaodia mutt arrange the clay pots for Adharapana ritual from local potters.
According to the potters of Kumbharpada, at least three sacks of good quality soil and a sack of sand are required for shaping a clay pot for the ritual. “We remove stones and garbage from the soil and sand before preparing the paste for shaping the pots. The pots are baked after they were sundried for a few days. The ideal height and circumference of a clay pot are around four feet each,” said Laxmidhar Bisoyi, a potter of Kumbharpada.
According to Bisoyi, at least a month is required for the shaping of three special clay pots for Adharapana ritual. “The process starts immediately after the Akshaya Trutiya and ends at least two days prior to the Bahuda Yatra. We observe food restrictions and utmost personal hygiene and sanctity while shaping the pots. Women are not allowed to touch the pots,” Bisoyi said.