Kullu Dussehra

Kullu Dasara, Kulu Dussehra, Dussehra in Himachal Pradesh, Kullu Dussehra Celebrations

The Dussehra of Himachal Pradesh is known as Kullu Dussehra as it takes place at the Dhalpur maiden of  the Kullu Valley. The Kullu Dussehra would start on the tenth day of the waxing phase of the moon in the month of Aswayuja (Ashwin) month of the lunar calendar and would continue for seven days.

Legend of Kullu Dussehra

Kullu Dussehra Story, Kullu Dasara Katha, History of Kullu Dussehra

Once sage Jamadagni was returning from mount Kailash to his hermitage at Malana. He had 18 idols of God with him. As he was crossing the Chaderkhani pass, there was a fierce storm. Jamdagni tried to hold his feet on the ground but because of the strong storm he was shaking. All the 18 idols fell into the river and got washed away. These idols were latter found by the villagers surrounding the Kullu Valley. It is believed that idol worship was started from that day onwards and Kullu was the place where idol worship started.

In the 16th century Raja Jagat Singh ruled the kingdom of Kullu. There was a peasant  by the name of Durgadatta, who was well educated and was famous as the one possessing the pearls of knowledge, which means he was a very great scholar with high knowledge. King was ignorant to understand the meaning of pearls of knowledge and asked his soldiers to bring those pearls. Soldiers could do nothing and went for Durgadatta. Durgadatta realizing that the soldiers were coming for him, was not willing to get punished by the king threw himself into fire and cursed the king. Durgadatta cursed that the king would see rice as worms and water as blood. The king was unable to eat or drink because of the curse.

The King consulted many Brahmins and one among them told that if he could get the statue of Raghunath in Ayodhya and install it in his kingdom he will be relived from the curse. The king sent a Brahmin to fetch the idol. The Brahmin went to Ayodhya and some how stole the idol of Raghunath and was returning to Kullu.

The people of Ayodhya, finding their deity missing went in search of the idol in all the directions and caught the Brahmin on the banks of river Sarayu. They questioned the Brahmin and the Brahmin told the story of the king of Kullu and the need of the idol for the king to get himself free from the curse.

The people did not want to part with the idol and so were taking back the idol to Ayodhya. As they started to move towards Ayodhya the idol began to gain weight and they were unable to move it. As they proceeded towards Kullu it became light.

The people understood and gave the idol of Raghunath to the Brahmin who took to the King of Kullu. The king installed the idol and declared that Raghunath was the ruling deity of his kingdom. After the king drank the Charan Amrit (water which washed the feet) of Lord Raghunath, his curse lifted and he was able to eat and drink normally.

It is believed that this was on Dussehra and even today a procession of bringing the idol is taken out in Kullu.

Kullu Dussehra Celebrations

Kullu Dussehra is a week long international fair (mela) held every year. Kullu is known as the valley of living Gods. Dussehra at Kullu Starts on the tenth day of the rising moon in the month of Ashvin, i.e. on Dussehra day itself and celebrated for the seven days.

The major attraction of this festival is Rath Yatra of the God Ragunath. In Rath yatra Raghunath is fallowed by hundreds of local deities. This festival is celebrated with singing and dancing. Other activities like cultural programs, sports competition, exhibitions and other Folk traditional activities are also organized.

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