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CHANDAN YATRA OF LORD JAGANNATH.

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The Hindu believes in the festivals of Lord Jagannath as the source of giving entertainment to the human society, So the festivals relating to Lord Jagannath are the occasions of great religious experience and devotional favour. In the metaphysical system the festivals are known as ‘Yatra’. Many festivals of Puri are related to Lord Jagannath and the Jagannath temple , out of which one most important festival is ‘Chandan Yatra’. This summer Festival of Lord Jagannath falls in April-May on Akshaya Trutiya i.e, the 3rd day of the bright fort night of the odiya month of Baisakha. This auspicious day also marks the beginning of the construction of the Rathas, chariots for the ceremonial sojourn of Jagannath,Balabhadra and Subhadra to the Gundicha Temple on the day of car festival. ‘Chandan Yatra’, literally, Sandalwood paste festival, indicates the worshiping of the deities with sandal mixed water. Chandan yatra is devided into two periods i.e, Bahar chandan or outer chandan(21 days) and Bhitar chandan or inner chandan (21 days).

The outer chandan lasts for 21 days. Every day the representative images of the deities i.e, Rama, Krishna, Madan Mohan, Laxmi and Saraswati(Biswadhatri) are taken in a procession to the famous Narendra tank or chandan pokhari. The five shivas known as Pancha Pandavas, namely Lokanath, Yameswar, Markandaya, Kapal Mochan and Nilakantha, accompany Madan Mohan(the representative of Lord Jagannath) to the narendra tank. In a gorgeously decorated boat Madan Mohan, Laxmi and Saraswati are placed and in another are placed Rama, Krishna and the Pancha Pandavas(five shivas). The deities enjoy an evening cruise and various models of worship in the picturesque narendra tank with the accompaniment of music and dance. On the last day of the festival ‘Bhaunri Yatra’ is performed.

The procession start up from Singhadwara to Narendra puskarini amid Hymn, bhajan, kirtana, mridanga, ghanta etc. wich site a pictureseque panaroma worth seeing. The traditionaly decorated royal elephant takes the lead followed by two gigantic decorated palinquies or vimana carrying the deities to their destination. The sacred vimanas takes rest on the shoulders of the professionally earmarked viman badus.Throughout their journey thousands of devotees throng to cover the glimpse of the yatra,offering puja & pankti bhoga to the deities. All along the way to narendra tank the conventional huge wooden sheds or chamundiya were erected enabling rest for the deities. Besides these, devotees carry chatris or the umbrellas made by the skilled Pipili people projecting there of the rich art and craft of the city. Thousands of people are seen taking a dip in this holy tank considering to be auspicious in this part of the year.

After the completion of the outer chandan yatra, the inner chandan yatra starts inside the temple and lasts for 21 days. Various rites are performed inside the temple, out of view of the public.Narendra tank is built by Narendra Dev, son of Kapilendra Dev. Being shouldered the responsibility of the kingdom in the hand of Purrosottam, Narendra devoted his time and energy and spent a lot to the all round development of this holy tank. Situated about three quarters of a mile north-east of the Jagannath temple,the Narendra tank covers an area of over 3.240 hectares(8 acres). It is 834 feet by 873 feet in size.The tank has an island in its middle bearing a small temple, connected with the south bank with a bridge, to which Madan Mohan, the representative deity of Jagannath, is brought during the chandan yatra.

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Amnesty International’s false claim of ‘incessant witch-hunt’ exposed.

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Amnesty International has said it is halting all its activities in India, claiming that it is being subjected to an ‘incessant witch-hunt’ over unfounded and motivated allegations. In a statement on Tuesday (September 29), Amnesty India said that it has been compelled to let go of staff in India and pause all its ongoing campaign and research work.

On the contrary, activities of Amnesty International in India were found to be suspicious and when the investigation started, it decided to halt its activities in the country, rather than facing the charges. In the recent probes, it has been found that the international organisation even failed to obtain the necessary permission to work in India, and was functioning illegally for so many years.

Amnesty has been receiving crores of rupees from abroad every year, while it was expected to register itself under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) for the same. The Government of India, therefore, seized all the bank accounts of Amnesty, which has been active in India under four different names, according to the investigation.

After being exposed, the Amnesty stated, “The complete freezing of Amnesty International India’s bank accounts by Government of India which it came to know on 10 September 2020, brings all the work being done by the organization to a grinding halt.”

“This is latest in the incessant witch-hunt of human rights organizations by Government of India over unfounded and motivated allegations,” Amnesty International India said, adding that it stands in full compliance with all applicable Indian and international laws.

The organisation further stated, “For human rights work in India, it operates through a distinct model of raising funds domestically. More than four million Indians have supported Amnesty International India’s work in the last eight years and around 100,000 Indians have made financial contributions.”

Amnesty supporters again raised the slogan of democracy under threat in India. The question comes to our mind what work this foreign organization was doing that halting of its activities will put India’s democracy under threat.

Amnesty International is a United Kingdom-based non-governmental organization (NGO). Established in 1961, Amnesty describes itself as an organization working in the field of human rights. It opened its office in India immediately after its establishment. While working in India, it had strived hard to defame India rather than protecting the human rights of Indian people.

In the year 1947, the British left India, but these institutions are still working to enslave the Indian people ideologically. The DNA analysis will further expose the activities of an organisation like Amnesty International.

You will be shocked to know that this organization has been campaigning against India worldwide on the issue of Jammu and Kashmir. It has also campaigned in favour of 26/11 attack convict Ajmal Kasab, Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, and 1993 Mumbai blast convict Yakub Memon.

Amnesty has also been very active with Urban Naxals, besides issuing a lot of statements on the Bhima Koregaon violence. It has relentlessly worked to tarnish India’s image on the global forums.

This international organisation also played a suspicious role after the Delhi riots in February this year. It also released a report on the Delhi riots in different parts of the world stating that the Delhi Police committed violence against those who were holding peaceful demonstrations.

The report gave a clean chit to rioters and also made an attempt to prove that these riots were anti-Muslim. This report has no doubt dented India’s image internationally, and Pakistan used the report to spread the false propaganda against India on international forums.

Refuting Amnesty International’s allegation, the Union Home Ministry said that all the “glossy statements” about humanitarian work and speaking truth to power are nothing but a “ploy to divert attention” from their activities which were in clear contravention of laid down Indian laws.

It said the Amnesty’s statement was “unfortunate, exaggerated and far from the truth,” adding “Such statements are also an attempt to extraneously influence the course of investigations by multiple agencies into the irregularities and illegalities carried out over the last few years.”

Notably, India’s fight is not just with Amnesty International, but also with the misuse of foreign funding. Crores of rupees come from abroad in India in the name of social service every year, but no one knows where this fund is being used as NGOs hardly give details related to their work.

Currently, there are around 31 lakh registered NGOs in India. In 2015, the CBI submitted this information before the Supreme Court. The question arises as to why there is a need for so many NGOs in a country like India.

You will be surprised to know that the number of NGOs is more than double the total number of schools; this number is 250 times more than the total government hospitals in the country.

Notably, there is one NGO for every 400 people in India, while there is only one policeman for 700 people; only 10 percent of NGOs follow government regulations, and the rest of 90 percent do not even submit their balance sheets.

In the recently concluded Monsoon Session, Parliament amended the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act (FCRA), which has created an uproar among NGOs receiving suspected foreign funding. The role of civil society is important in any democracy, but anti-national activities cannot be allowed under its guise.

Not only India, but several other countries are upset with the activities of NGOs. Around 40 countries including Russia, Israel, Hungary, and Egypt have enacted stringent laws against NGOs. Even in America, there is a ban on the interference of any foreign institution in its domestic politics. The Indian government has also followed the same international policy.

During the UPA government, the action was taken against such NGOs. In 2009, 883 NGOs were blacklisted on the charges of misusing funds. In 2012, registration of more than 40,000 social institutions was canceled, following the protests against the Kudan-Kulam nuclear project in Tamil Nadu. The role of these NGOs was found to be suspicious during the UPA 2 government.

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