for ISKCON News on July 6, 2012
The "forest" of cameras recording the stage program at the Dhaka Ratha Yatra festival
The Car Festival (Ratha Yatra) of Lord Jagannath is one of the largest festivals of ISKCON, Dhaka, Bangladesh. Ratha Yatra Festival Of Lord Jagannath was organized by ISKCON,Dhaka at temple premises for nine days, started from 21st June, Thursday to 29th June,Friday, 2012.
Overwhelming crowds of people poured into the streets of Dhaka to participate in ISKCON’s Ratha Yatra festival here on 21st, Thursday. Police, and other city officials, estimated that around 60 thousands people joined Lord Jagannatha’s procession through the capital city of Bangladesh.
Mr. Obaidul Kader (Minister of Railway and Communication, Govt. people’s Republic of Bangladesh), Mr. Mizanur Rahman Khan Dipu, (Member of Parliament), Sri Biren Sikder(Member of Parliament) inaugurated the Ratha Yatra procession.The well-furnished three Chariots of Lord Jagannath, Baladev and Subhadra commenced from ISKCON Swamibag Ashram and were pulled by crowds of people along the main streets namely Matijheel area, Press Club, Duel Square, Dhaka University area etc. Throughout the procession prasadam was distributed and more than ten kirtan parties loudly resounded the holy names of the Lord.
The colourful rally ended at the Dhakeswari National Temple after two and half hours. Bangladesh has about 85% muslim population, many of whom also participated in the Ratha Yatra procession. During nine-days-long programs different cultural groups from India performed Harinam Sankirtan, Padabali Kirtans, Dramas, Vedic dances, seminars etc. Approximately 100 thousand dishes full Krishna Prashadam were distributed among the visitors during the Festival.
The crowds of devotees broke all previous records. At the end the 29th June, came His Holiness Bhakti Nityananda Swami Maharaja from Mayapur (India) to inaugurate the Return Car Festival. The Chariots started from Dhakashwari Temple in the afternoon and followed the same Road map and ended at Swamibag ISKCON Temple. Hundreds and thousands of devotees alike at the opening ceremony spontaneously joined the festival and begged Lord Jagannath’s mercy.
Most of the Televion channels and newspapers of Bangladesh were covered with the Ratha Yatra Festival’s news. Especially the national TV channel (Bangladesh Televion) showed a 30 minutes program on ISKCON Dhaka Ratha Yatra Feasival.
Please click the link to see more photos: