On Friday, January 29, 2010, ISKCON Juhu, Mumbai celebrated its 30th annual
Jagannath Rathayatra festival.
The Rathayatra festival was inaugurated by Ashokbhau Jadhav, the local state legislator, and Sri Dilip Patel, the chairman of the Mumbai transit authority, in a pandal tent erected in
front of the Juhu temple guest house entrance.
Three grand chariots, elaborately decorated with arranged flowers, flower garlands, balloons and banners, left the temple around 2:00 PM. They were pulled by thousands of residential and congregational devotees from the city’s four ISKCON temples (Juhu, Chowpatty, Mira Road and Khargar), as well as visitors from as far as New Zealand, China and the Ukraine.
Gopal Krishna Goswami, ISKCON Juhu’s Governing Body Commissioner, and Navayogendra Swami together performed arati to Sri Jagannath, Baladeva and Subadhra to inaugurate the procession. Kavichandra Swami, Radhanath Swami, and Vaiyasaki Dasa were among the featured singers who led kirtan along the festival route.
The chariots proceeded past the historical Chandan cinema and over to the main Juhu-Lokhandwala Road. The route was then a straight path for the next seven kilometers to the Lokhandwala garden, where a three-day pandal program was hosted by ISKCON Juhu.
Thousands of local citizens participated in the festival, thronging to attend morning and evening lectures and to explore the information booths, and lining up to partake of the free meals of sanctified food. The event culminated in an offering of "Chappan Bhog" (an opulent meal consisting of over fifty items) to Their Lordships on Sunday, January 31.