Sambalpur, Aug 12: Priests today finalised the ‘Lagna’ (auspicious time for ritual) for the Nuakhai festival.
The Navanna (newly harvested rice) will be offered to Goddess Samaleswari between 9.35 am and 9.50 am, on August 23 this year. This was announced by the Brahmapura Temple Trust Committee today.
As per the tradition the priests finalised the ‘Lagna’, a day after the Janmashtami festival. The Nuakhai is celebrated on ‘Panchami tithi’ of the Odia month of Bhadraba every year. On this auspicious occasion, thousands of devotees throng the Samaleswari temple to invoke blessings.
Nuakhai is celebrated by offering the newly-harvested crop to the presiding deity as a mark of gratitude for good rain and bumper harvest. However, the festival will be celebrated with restrictions due to Coronavirus outbreak.
Nuakhai is an agrarian festival of western Odisha. The head of the family worship the deity and offer rice and other food items to the deity. The head then distributes the prasad among the family members which was followed by ‘Nuakhai Juhar’, a major ritual of the festival.