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Rath Yatra 2024 Festival Date, History, Significance, Celebration

Published Date: 03-Nov-2022

Rath Yatra which literally means, ‘Festival of Chariots’ is mainly associated with the Hindu and Buddhist community of India. On this day, the idols of Lord Jagannath and his siblings are decorated and brought to cover a 3-km-long journey (from Jagannath Temple to the Gundicha Temple) in chariots drawn by over hundreds of devotees, every year.

According to the Hindu calendar, Rath Yatra is observed on the second day of Ashadha month i.e., late June or early July. In ancient literature, this day is referred to as Ashadha Shukla Paksha Dwitiya. In 2024, Rath Yatra will take place on 7 July (Sunday).

Rath Yatra History and Significance

Rath Yatra 2022 | History and significance

Rath Yatra 2024 | History and significance

The word ‘Jagannath’ is derived from the Sanskrit language that translates to ‘Lord of the Universe’ in English; Lord Jagannath is considered as a form of Lord Vishnu.

Holy literature including Brahma Purana, Padma Purana and Skanda Purana describe this festival as one of the most prominent festivals of the Hindu religion. According to the texts, the origin of this day dates back to the 12th century. The holy rituals of this festival include the procession of three chariots; for carrying Lord Jagannath, brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra, for a 3-km-long procession till the Gundicha Temple.

Rath Yatra Celebrations across India

Rath Yatra 2022 | Rath Yatra Celebrations

Rath Yatra 2024 | Rath Yatra Celebrations

One of the most anticipated times of the year in Odisha, Rath Yatra is celebrated by organizing a procession of chariots carrying the idols of Lord Jagannath, his brother and sister, who are then taken to the Gundicha Temple in Odisha. The preparation of the 14-meter-high and 11 sq. meter wide, chariots begin 2 months before the ‘Ashadha Shukla Paksha Dwitiya’. The local artists of Puri decorate these chariots with bright colours and religious graphics. These chariots are pulled by over hundreds of devotees.

Once the chariots reach the Gundicha Temple, the idols are given a holy bath and are then rested in the temple for nearly a week before bringing them back to the Jagannath Temple. Since the late 1960s, Rath Yatra began being celebrated throughout the globe in various cities on account of the ‘Hare Krishna movement’.

Nowadays, Hindus and Buddhists all over the globe celebrate this festival by organizing a chariot procession of Lord Jagannath.

Year-Wise Rath Yatra Observances

YEAR DAY DATE Event/Festival
2015 Sat 18-Jul Rath Yatra
2016 Wed 6-Jul Rath Yatra
2017 Sun 25-Jun Rath Yatra
2018 Sat 14-Jul Rath Yatra
2019 Thu 4-Jul Rath Yatra
2020 Tue 23-Jun Rath Yatra
2021 Mon 12-Jul Rath Yatra
2022 Fri 1-Jul Ratha Yatra
2023 Tues 20-Jun Ratha Yatra
2024 Sun 7-Jul Ratha Yatra
2025 Fri 27-Jun Ratha Yatra

Other Festivals in India with Holiday Type

Festivals in India Day Date Holiday Type
New Year’s Day Mon 01-Jan Restricted Holiday
Lohri Sat 13-Jan Restricted Holiday
Makar Sankranti Sun 14-Jan Restricted Holiday
Pongal Mon 15-Jan Restricted Holiday
Guru Gobind Singh Jayanti Wed 17-Jan Restricted Holiday
Republic Day Fri 26-Jan Gazetted Holiday
Losar Sat 10-Feb Restricted Holiday
Basant Panchmi Wed 14-Feb Restricted Holiday
Guru Ravidas Jayanti Sat 24-Feb Gazetted Holiday
Maharshi Dayanand Saraswati Jayanti Wed 6-Mar Restricted Holiday
Mahashivratri Fri 8-Mar Gazetted Holiday
Holi Mon 25-March Gazetted Holiday
Good Friday Fri 29-Mar Gazetted Holiday
Easter Day Sun 31-Mar Restricted Holiday
Gudi Padwa Tue 9-Apr Restricted Holiday
Eid-ul-Fitr Wed 10-Apr Gazetted Holiday
Vaisakhi (Vishu) Sat 13-Apr Restricted Holiday
Rama Navami Wed 17-Apr Gazetted Holiday
Mahavir Jayanti Sun 21-Apr Gazetted Holiday
Rabindra Jayanti Wed 8-May Restricted Holiday
Buddha Purnima (Vesak) Thu 23-May Gazetted Holiday
Id-ul-Zuha (Bakrid) Mon 17-Jun Restricted Holiday
Rath Yatra Sun 7-Jul Gazetted Holiday
Muharram (Ashura) Wed 17-Jul Gazetted Holiday
Independence Day Thu 15-Aug Gazetted Holiday
Parsi New Year’s Day (Nauraz) Thu 15-Aug Public Holiday
Raksha Bandhan (Rakhi) Mon 19-Aug Restricted Holiday
Janmashtami Mon 26-Aug Restricted Holiday
Ganesh Chaturthi Sat 7-Sep Restricted Holiday
Onam Sun 15-Sep Restricted Holiday
Milad-un-Nabi or Id-e- Milad Mon 16-Sep Gazetted Holiday
Gandhi Jayanti Wed 02-Oct Gazetted Holiday
Dussehra Sat 12-Oct Gazetted Holiday
Valmiki Jayanti Thu 17-Oct Restricted Holiday
Karva Chauth Sun 20-Oct Gazetted Holiday
Dhanteras Tue 29-Oct Restricted Holiday
Kali Puja Thu 31-Oct Gazetted Holiday
Halloween Day Thu 31-Oct No Holiday
Diwali Fri 1-Nov Gazetted Holiday
Lakshmi Puja Fri 1-Nov Gazetted Holiday
Karnataka Rajyotsava Fri 1-Nov Gazetted Holiday
Kerala Piravi Fri 1-Nov Gazetted Holiday
Govardhan Puja Sat 2-Nov Gazetted Holiday
Bhai Dooj Sun 3-Nov Gazetted Holiday
Chhath Puja Thu 7-Nov Gazetted Holiday
Guru Nanak Jayanti Fri 15-Nov Gazetted Holiday
Christmas Wed 25-Dec Public Holiday
Sargun Preet Kaur
Sargun has an appetite for challenges and creative hurdles that can help her grow as she conquers them one by one. With an innate desire to travel the world, she weaves through life by visiting her dream destinations. When not in her creative zone, Sargun loves to smash in badminton and binge-watch her favourite shows.

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