This is popularly known as Pana Sankranti or Mesha Sankranti in Odisha. The fist day of of the traditional solar month of Mesha is celebrated as Odia new year. The festival is celebrated with visits to Shiva, Shakti, or Hanuman temples, as the day is also considered to be the birthday of Hanuman. People take baths in rivers or major pilgrimage centers to have a new start in their life. Pana(A chilled sweet mango-milk-yoghurt-coconut drink) is integral part of the festival. In many temples Pana is distributed to devotees by volunteers. Many kiosks has been set all over the state for same.
Maha Bisubha Sankranti is celebrated all over Odisha. At Sarala Temple the priests walk on hot coals in the fire-walking festival known as famous Jhaamu Yatra. At the Maa Patana Mangala Temple in Chhatrapada, Bhadrak, the Patua Yatra festival is held from 14 April to 21 April. In Northern Odisha, the festival is known as Chadak Parva. In Southern Odisha, the Meru Yatra festival is celebrated as the end of the month-long Danda nata dance festival. Thousands of devotees gather at the Shakti Pitha shrine in the Taratarini Temple because it is one of the auspicious days during the Chaitra Yatra. People from all over the state eat festive chhatua and drink Bel Pana to mark the occasion.
In Jhaamu Yatra, "Jhama nata" a art form is performed by traditional male folk artistes known as Ghantapatuas. They generally perform in a group of two or four wearing dresses that resemble women's clothing. Another street art is performed in the auspicious occasion named Danda Nata. The opening ritual begins in the middle of Chaitra Monthe. The performers known as Dandua, take dip in a village pond and walk/run over hot charcoals while performing the art. After performing danda nata they also perform jala dandaby dipping themselves in deep water for a short while. These performances symbolize the liberation from physical pain by their gesture.
Cuisine: Pana (A chilled sweet mango-milk-yoghurt-coconut drink)
Time of Celebration: 13th April, 2020
Location: Sarala Temple, Maa Patana Mangala Temple, Tarini Temple
Travel Itineraries: Train/ bus/ cab