Ashokastami and Rukuna Rath Yatra 2023


Rukuna Rath 2023

Rukuna Rath 2023-29th April 2023 (Wednesday)

On Ashokastami, Lord Lingaraj’s Rukuna Rath Yatra begins in Bhubaneswar. The yatra began early in the morning at the 11th century temple, allowing devotees to see the deities in a custom known as Sahana Mela.
Following a series of ceremonies, bronze sculptures of Chandrasekhar, Rukmini, and Basudev were mounted on the chariot amid loud gongs, conch blowing, and hymn chanting. The chariots dragged for a city tour at 4 p.m., as planned. The ‘Pahandi’ rituals and ‘Ratharudha’ ceremony will take place between 12:30 and 1:30 p.m., with the Chariot pulling event beginning at 3:30 p.m.Meanwhile, on April 13, the ‘Bahuda’ rite will be performed.

Ligaraja Temple

Lingaraja Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva in Bhubaneswar, the capital of the Indian state of Odisha. It is one of the city’s oldest temples. The temple is the most visible landmark in Bhubaneswar and one of the state’s most popular tourist attractions. The Temple is situated at Lingaraj Temple Rd, Old Town, Bhubaneswar, Odisha 751002.


Ashokastami is one of the fourteenth pilgrimages of Lord Srilingaraja, the lord of Ekamra area (Bhubaneswar). It is called Ashokastami because of the dedication of Ashoka flowers to Lord Lingaraj during the procession of Lord Lingaraj on the eighth day of the lunar eclipse of the month of Chaitra.
According to legend, Sita Ashoka, who was abducted by Ravana, worshiped Shiva by reciting Ashoka for reunion with Lord Rama on this eighth day with the re-emergence of the constellation while he was in the forest. According to that tradition, on this day, Hindu women perform eight vows and dedicate their fasts to Lord Shiva by observing the vows to attain peace and prosperity by alleviating the suffering of themselves and their families.

Mythology behind Rukuna Ratha Yatra

According to mythology, Lord Sri Ramachandra killed Sita by killing Lankapati Ravana. As Lankapati Ravana was a Brahmin, Ramchandra was convicted of Brahma murder. According to Kulguru Vaishistha, he went to Ekamra and worshiped Harihar (Lingaraj) at Rameshwar every day to get rid of this sin. Satisfied with the worship, Lord Lingaraj asked what the bridegroom wanted. At the end of the month of Chaitra, Ramchandra asked the bridegroom to come to the Rameshwar temple of Harihar (Lingaraj) in the chariot of Devadalan in the eighth constellation of Shuklapaksha. From that day on, Lingaraj Mahaprabhu comes to the Rameshwar temple for a five-day procession to pay his respects. The procession has been going on according to the custom and tradition.

Rukuna Ratha

Rukuna Ratha
Rukuna Ratha

Another feature of the rath yatra is that Maa Bhubaneswari travels on a chariot with Mahaprabhu Lingaraj to kill Suresh on this day. The chariot is named after Rukmini because of the Rukmini chariot ride of Basudev and Lakshmi, accompanied by the moving idol of Lingaraj Mahaprabhu Chandrasekhar. Rukunarath is named after Rukmini, the wife of Lord Krishna. Such naming dates back to the Vaishnava period.

Celebration of Rukuna Rath Yatra

Rukuna Ratha

On the day of Ashokasthami, after the incense burner, the moving idol of Mahaprabhu Srilingaraja, Srichandrashekhar, Sridolgobind and the Goddess Bhubaneswar, perform the Pahandi BJ after the Mahaprabhu’s meeting at the main temple. At the south gate of the Natmandap, the idol trio once circled the temple after the Vibhishan Aalti. After descending the twenty-two steps, the coconut is broken by the Lord in front of Siddhi Binayak. Mahaprabhu circled the chariot three times after reaching the chariot rhythm with the beat of bells, bells, instruments and dancing. He then ascended the Charmal and circled the chariot three more times to sit on the throne. The Thakurs are later adorned with flowers.

Rukuna Ratha
Rukuna Ratha

Later, the four wheels are worshiped, the horse is worshiped, the guardian is worshiped, and the chariot is then sanded by the Brahmin devotees with the title of Mohapatra. But there are no rules for swimming. During the pilgrimage, Shankaracharya Math and Gopalaballav Math offer Mahaprabhu rows. Lingaraj Mahaprabhu’s journey is five days. Mahaprabhu Srilingaraja Bahuda wins on Chaitra Shukla Dwadashi

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