Rath Yatra gets a Russian flavour in Kolkata
The Rath Yatra of Lord Jagannath was celebrated with gaiety and fervour in the city.
Kolkata: The Rath Yatra of Lord Jagannath was celebrated with gaiety and fervour on Thursday in the city.
International Society for Krishna Consciousness (Iskcon) organised its 41st Kolkata Rath Yatra with the theme of `Hare Krishna movement in Russia.`
"The theme was selected to highlight the Russian Vaishnava movement and their glorious struggle for Krishna Bhakti," Iskcon`s general manager Radharaman Das said.
The procession with the idols of Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Subhadra Devi began in the morning from Park Circus Maidan with Russian devotees leading the kirtans in front of the three chariots.
It was inaugurated by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.
"My prayer to the Lord is to seek blessings to usher in peace, prosperity, happiness and awaken the conscience in this beautiful world," she said.
The festival venue of Brigade Parade Ground has been decorated with replicas of Russian landmarks and the main gate of the grounds has the Saint Basil`s Church of Moscow.
For the next nine days till the return car festival on June 29, cultural troupes from Moscow will perform at the venue.
Besides regular kirtan programmes, a youth festival with music performances, Russian drama and debates would also be held, Iskcon sources said.