Karma puja fervour grips Mayurbhanj of Odisha
Baripada: Karma puja is one of the major festivals of Odisha’s Mayurbhanj district. It falls a few days after Ganesh puja. And hence the district has been gripped with festive fervour these days.
As per reports, the people of Kudumi community uphold their culture and tradition through Karma puja.
People of different communities like Munda, Bathudi, Bhuan, Saunti, Ledha, Kohala and Santali along with Kudumi community live in Mayurbhanj. Yet, the traditions of the Kudumi community are unique.
On the 11th day in the month of Bhadrav people of the Kudumi community worship Karma tree in the evening with traditional prescription. And then they dance to the tune of Dhol and bring the Karma branch to their house. Here the branch is worshipped as the idol.
After reaching the house they worship the Karma branch in front of their house and establish it in a small pandal. There while the branch is worshipped, people of all age groups pray for their wishes.
As per legends, there was a king named Karma. The people of Kudumi community have been worshipping him genetically. There was a king named Sribatsa. He had two sons. One of the sons was a farmer while the other was a trader.
Once when the farmer son was worshipping King Karma, the trader son called for him. However, since Kinga Karma was busy in the worship process of the farmer, he could not pay heed. The trader got angry with this and threw away the Karma God. And hence, within a few days he had to borne severe loss in his trade. Even he did not get anything to eat.
Yet, after realising his mistake, he again worshipped King Karma and within a few days he again became rich by the blessings of Karma. And since then Karma king is being worshipped by the people of this community.
People of Kudumi community observe many festivals throughout the year. Karma puja is one of these. After the worship is over, girls and women dance in group to the tune of songs and music of their traditional song.
While Karma festival is observed in many places of Mayurbhanj district, even people of other communities have started worshipping Karma God.