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Kakatpur Mangala – Information About Kakatpur Mangala Maa

Kakatpur Mangala is one of the eight guardian deities as per some scriptures in Hinduism. As per Puranas, Mangala, as Mangala Chandi or Mangala Chandika, sprang from the entrails of Goddess Durga when she crushed to death demon Mahishasura. Kakatpur is a small village in Puri District and is situated at a distance of 50 kms from Puri, on the Puri-Astaranga road. Goddess Mangala is the presiding deity of Kakatpur.
As per historical evidence, Goddess Mangala was concealed in the now extinct Prachi River during the invasion of Sulaiman Karrani, alias Kalapahad, in the 16th century.

Kakatpur Mangala Story

A local legend connects the place Kakatpur with Goddess Mangala. 

Legend has it that Goddess Mangala kept herself hidden in River Prachi. Once, a boatman was caught in the middle of the river as there was huge deluge and flood. During his stay in the middle of the river, Goddess Mangala came in his dream as asked him to recover her murti from the river and to install it in the nearby Mangalapur village.

The boatman recovered the murti of Goddess Mangala and as per the direction of the Goddess he established the murti in a temple in Mangalapur village.

After this the boatman saw a black crow diving into the river and did not come out of the water for hours and days. The crow disappeared exactly at the same place in the river from where he recovered the murti of Goddess Mangala.

In local Odia language ‘Crow’ means ‘Kaka’ and ‘Detained’ means ‘Atka’. So by combining the two words it becomes ‘Kaka-Atka’, so the village where the divine incident took place came to be known as ‘Kakatpur’ (Kaka-Atka) and the Goddess is known as Kakatpur Mangala.

Six-Foot Murti of Goddess Kakatpur Mangala

The six-foot-high murti of Kakatpur Mangala Maa is made of black granite. She is seated on a two foot lotus. In her three hands she holds a discus, rosary and lotus bud. The fourth hand displays a mudra of counting beads.

Flanked by two celestial maidens, the murti of Kakatpur Mangala is older than the 9th century AD.

The present Kakatpur Mangala Temple is said to have been constructed sometime in 1850.
The famous festival of Mangala Maa, Jhamu Yatra, falls on the last Tuesday in the month of Vaishakh. On the day, her devotees, known as ghanta patua, walk on live fire (hot coals) down a narrow strip, which is witnessed by thousands of people.

Kakatpur Mangala And Puri Jagannath Temple

Kakatpur Mangala temple has a close relation with Puri Jagannath Temple during the Nabakalebar (when new murtis are installed in Puri Temple) festival. The new murti are created from a sacred wood known as “Daru Brahma”  in local language. Nobody knows from where to find the sacred wood to create the new murtis, so as per the tradition the priests of Lord Jagannath temple come to Kakatpur Mangala to pray the Goddess to help them to find the sacred wood.

The chief servitors of Puri Jagannath Temple offer worship to Goddess Mangala and beg her blessings to direct them in a dream regarding the exact location of the neem trees which should be used as the holy log for carving out the murtis of Jagannath, Balabhadra, Subhadra and Sudarshan.

Chaitanya Mahaprabhu during his stay in Sri Kshetra, used to visit Mangala every year n the company of this devotees. Mangala is worshipped as a Vaishnava deity.

Jhamu Yatra Festival in Vaishakh Month Tuesdays

Tuesdays of the sacred month Vaisakh (April 14 to May 15) every year is highly auspicious in the temple. 

On the occasion devotees collect sacred water from Prachi River and pray to the deity to get her blessings, then with the earthen pot, filled with sacred water, on their shoulder, they walk on the surface of burning coal spread on a long channel bare feet. Due to their faith on Goddess Mangala and Mother's blessing on them, the devotes are unhurt while performing such a risky custom. Every year thousands of devotees come to Kakatpur to celebrate the Jhamu festival.

The wonder of the festival is that no one gets burned.