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Union Govt to promote Puri's Nabakalebar festival under Incredible India campaign
Since Lord Jagannath's Nabakalebar festival is being observed after a gap of 19 years, The Bhartiya Janata Party Government at the Centre has decided to promote the Hindu religious festival under 'the Incredible India Campaign for its international branding', stated a release by the Union government. The preparations are on in Puri for Nabakalebar festival to be celebrated on 10th July this year.

As per tradition of the Puri temple, the old bodies of the deities at Puri temple will be replaced by the new ones made of Neem (Margo) wood logs called sacred Daru. This religious ritual is known as Banayaga Parba of the Nabakalevara ceremony.

According to the Union Minister of State for Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation, Dr. Mahesh Sharma, the government is going to release Rs. 50 crore for providing infrastructure and other facilities for grand celebration of the Nabakalebar festival.

Furthermore, the Union Culture Ministry will release a postal stamp and coin to mark the long-awaited festival. Also, the facilities at Bhubaneswar airport are being upgraded for the first international flight from it on the occasion of Nabakalebar festival.

Chief Minister of Odisha, Naveen Patnaik and his government has also decided to make the event a grand success by attracting tourists from across India and beyond. Special committees have been formed to supervise the preparations for the Nabakalebar event in Puri.

It may be recalled that the process of searching the sacred Darus had begun from Chaitra Sukla Dasami. This day comes 65 days before the Snana Purnima festival (bathing festival) of the deities. The search process of the sacred wood was carried out by a group formed as per the traditions of the Puri temple.

However, the much-celebrated Puri Rath Yatra festival related to the worship of Lord Jagannath to commemorate Lord's annual visit to his birthplace, Gundicha Temple, and aunt's home along with his elder brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra from July 18 to 30.

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