BHAWANIPATNA:The famous ‘Khandabasa’ festival of Goddess Lankeswari was celebrated on the occasion of Mulastami at Junagarh on Wednesday. As per tradition, cleaning and purification rituals of the ceremonial swords of the deity were held and later those were brought to the temple in a procession. After performance of tantric rituals in the temple at 9.40 pm, the ceremonial swords were placed in standing position on both sides of the altar of the deity inside the temple by Maharaja Udit Pratap Deo, eldest son of the last ruling chief of Kalahandi.
On Thursday, thousands of devotees from far-flung areas thronged the temple and performed special puja. Lankeswari is a tutelary deity of Naga dynasty of Kalahandi. Similarly, ‘Mundabasa’ festival of deity Manikeswari was celebrated at Bhawanipatna amidst secret tantric rituals on the occasion of Mulastami. On Manikeswari temple premises, a new clay head decorated with ornaments and gems was placed over the body of the deity replacing the original head of the deity. This new head will remain till Dussehra and later it will be immersed in Purusottam Sagar. With this, the 16-day long Saradiya Utsav of the deities began.