Significance of the RATHA YATRA chariots in JAGANNATH PURI.

Each year in Jagannath Puri, three enormous chariots are built anew for Lord Jagannatha, Balarama and Subhardra. Over 1,000 logs are brought from the Dasapalla and Ranpur forests, and more than 100 carpenters work for two months constructing the three chariots. A local mill provides nearly 2,000 meters of cloth each year, and the chariots are radiantly draped in color. Very strong coconut fiber ropes, 8 inches in diameter, are used by the devotees to pull the chariots along the parade route. The nails, brackets and fixtures are all made locally, and the smiths work for a month on them. The ratha’s main structure (above the wheels) contains eighteen pillars and roofs. Each chariot holds nine parswadevatas (subsidiary deities), two dwarapalas (door keepers), one Sarathi (charioteer) and one presiding deity of the crest banner (dhwaja devata), and all are made of wood.

JAGANNATH BALABHADRA SUBHADRA
Ratha NANDIGHOSA GARUDADHWAJA KAPILDHWAJA TALADHWAJA DARPADALANA PADMADHWAJA
Number of wheels 16 14 12
Total number of wooden pieces 832 763 593
Height 13.5m. 13.2m. 12.9m.
Color of cloth wrappings Red, Yellow Red, Blue Red, Black
Guarded by Garuda Vasudev Jayadurga
Names of charioteers Daruka Matali Arjuna
The flag Trailokyamohini Unnani Nadambika
The horses Shankha, Balahaka, Shveta, Haridashva Tibara, Ghora, Dirghashrama, Swarnanava Rochika, Mochika, Jita, Aparajita
The ropes Sankhachuda Basuki Swarnachuda
Presiding nine Deities Varaha, Govardhana, Krushna, Gopi – Krishna, Rama, Narayana,Trivikram, Hanuman and Rudra Ganesha, Kartikeya, Sarvamangala, Pralambari, Halayudha, Mrutyunjaya, Natamvara, Mukteshwar, Sheshadev Chandi, Chamunda, Ugratara, Vanadurga, Shulidurga, Varahi, Shyama Kali, Mangala and Vimala