The Third Tuesday of Chaitra month, considered the holiest in the annual calendar of the Tara Tarini Shakti Peetha began with the chanting of Vedic Mantras on the midnight of Monday. On the occasion lakhs of devotees had gathered at the hill shrine from Monday afternoon itself. As per the established traditions the Mangala Arati started at around 12.10 am in the morning and after the completion of Abakasha, Snana, Mailama Lagi, Sringara, Chandana Lagi, Panchamruta Bhoga, Bala Bhoga and Khichidi Bhoga the morning Arati of Adi Shakti was completed in 3.20 am at the Sanctum of the Shrine. Following it the Bagala Mukhi Besha Darshana for the Devotees started at around 3.30 am in the morning.
As per Hindu Purana and Tantra Shastra this is one of the 04 major Shakti Peethas in India where the twin goddesses Tara and Tarini are worshipped as the Breast Shrine of Devi Sati and the manifestation of Adi Shakti.
This famous Shakti/Tantra Peetha is located on the bank of pious river Rushikulya which is near Berhampur city in Ganjam district of Odisha.
The goddesses Tara and Tarini are regarded as the presiding deity (Ista-Devi) in majority of households in Odisha and in many parts of India.
Around Four lakhs of devotees visited the Tara Tarini Shakti Peetha on the occasion.
Mundan ceremony of over 10,000 babies (usually performed during the first year of a child’s life) is done to get the blessings of the Adi Shakti.
Devotees waited in long queues and dared extreme heat to offer prayers at the Shakti Peetha on the hill-top and participate in the Chaitra Mela, one of the biggest and longest religious fairs in the country.
On this occasion, more than 15,000 families and groups were seen cooking in the surrounding areas of the shrine and had a day of picnic at the Shrine. This is a unique and thousands of years old tradition at Tara Tarini Shakti Peetha.
Ganjam District administration and District police made elaborate arrangements for the visitors. As per the believe devotees climbed 999 holy steps to reach the hill temple. The rope-way which is being operated by TTDB and Ushabreco Pvt. Ltd. also carried thousands of devotees to the hill temple. The TTDB also operated buses to carry around 10,000 devotees to the hill top.
The Temple authorities distributed Pana, Buttermilk and Halwa Prasad to all the devotees during the entire day.
Justic Basudev Panigrahi of Odisha High Court, Member of Parliament, Aska Shri Ladu Kishor Swain, MLA Tirtol, Shri R Mallick, Odisha Southern Division IG Shri Amitabh Thakur, many other senior central and state government officials, Sub Collector, Tahasildar, officials of district administration, Secretary TTDB Shri Pramod Panda, Temple Executive Officer, office bearers of TTDB and Temple Management were also present on the occasion.
Special arrangements have been made for the convenience of the visitors. The TTDB, TATA, Gopalpur PORT Authority and other organizations set up Tents on the way and in and around the hilltop so that visitors can take rest and visit the Shrine without any difficulty.
Temporary health camps and drinking water points were also put up. The volunteers of the TTDB, NGOs and voluntary organizations and local residents actively helped the devotees who came from various neighboring states like Andhra Pradsh, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal and from many parts of the country.
Thousands of volunteers and hundreds of Policemen were deployed to control the huge rush, therefore the Third Tuesday of Chaitra Yatra which saw a huge rush passed off peacefully.
Thanks & Regards,
Ram Prasad Tripathy
PRO, Tara Tarini Development Board