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Nabakalebara

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It has been already stated that the bodies of the deities of the Puri temple have been fabricated out of the logs of wood of the mangoes tree. An wooden object is liable to decay after a certain period and needs replacement. So the images of Jagannath require a change over t new bodies. In such years as have two months of Asadha, this new body change over ceremony called the NabaKalevara takes place, when the old images are replaced by new ones. Normally, this should take place once in 12 years, but actually the shortest period is 8 years and the longest is 19 years.

Even a brief account of the NabaKalevara rituals and procedures would be a small book. The various steps taken by the temple authorities to celebrate the festival in the traditional manner are very extensive and hence the main points to be remembered are described below.

Specific persons including the Daitas are deputed from the Puri temple to the Mangala Temple in Kakatapur village to implore the mercy of the said goddess, so that they would be able to spot out the suitable margosa trees. There are many specifications about the environment, location, height, age and other details of the trees which should be thoroughly checked before they are procured for the purpose.