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India: Puri Rath Yatra Holiday Stamp

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India post issued a stamp featuring the Rath Yatra which takes place at puri (Orissa) every year. This years Rath Yatra took place on 13 July 2010.

The biggest and the grandest of all festivals, the highlight is the sacred journey of the statues of the Lord Jagannath of Puri with brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra from main temple to Gundicha Temple, where they remain for nine days.

The mammoth wooden chariots carrying the three deities pulled by thousands of devotees, present a spectacular scene. The yatra (journey) begins on the second day of the lunar month (asadha).

The Rath Yatra is also known as Car Festival. An annual festival commemorates the journey of Krishna from Gokul to Mathura. It also symbolizes a journey to light from the dark, which commences on the 2nd day of the bright fortnight in the month of Asadha (June-July).

Lakhs of devotees converge to the city to join festivities lasting for nine days. In this journey, thousands haul the three huge rathas (chariots) carrying statues of Jagannath, his brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra, down Grand road to the Gundicha Temple

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