The making of new idols of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, Devi Subhadra and other presiding deities began in Odisha’s holy town Puri with the start of the 11-day long Mahayajna in the Koili Baikuntha inside the temple premises on Friday.
The process began after Puri king Dibya Singh Deb, considered to be the first servitor of Lord Jagannath, ceremonially handed over a betel nut to the rajguru (royal counsellor) at the Sri Nahar, the royal palace in the pilgrim town.
The ritual symbolised the authorisation to go ahead with the process of carving out new idols of the deities. On May 22, the timber for making of the idols reached Puri.
The idols would be carved at Koili Baikuntha inside the temple. Nabakalebara details here.
As part of the ‘Antah Banajaga’, 75 Swotriya Brahmins would perform a Yajna that would continue till construction of the idols of four deities ends.
During the first phase of ‘Anasara’, 10 Biswakarmas would carve the images of all three deities and Lord Sudarshan as per the instruction of senior Daitapatis. After the idols are completed, the Gajapati would offer Purnahuti on Chaturdashi day of the Hindu calendar on June 15. The new idols would then be placed facing the old ones in the ‘Anasara Gruha’.
On June 15 midnight, senior Daitapatis would transfer the Holy Brahma from the old idols to the new idols and the old idols would be buried in Koili Baikuntha. The new idols would be taken out during the annual Rath Yatra scheduled on July 18.