The celebrations of ‘Dola Purnima' or ‘Vasant Purnima', which began at Ganjam on Wednesday, concluded on Thursday with some minor hiccups. Localites alleged that police intervened and stopped shows of folk theatres mid way. It led to tension in the area. The deities from different temples that were brought to the main road of the town for the festival were not taken back in the afternoon. A peace meeting was held in the evening to bring in peace in the area. It was attended by police and administrative officials. Later in the evening groups from different localities decided to take back the deities to their respective temples.
A few years ago, the Kolkata-Chennai National Highway that passes through Ganjam town used to remain blocked for 24 hours during the celebration. A new bypass road that came up in the area has solved the problem.
Deities from various temples in different streets of Ganjam town and adjoining villages brought in colourful palanquins called ‘viman' congregate on the National Highway at Ganjam town.
According to Rabindra Panda of Ganjam town, the tradition has been continuing for more than 400 years. Some devotees from the village had started the celebrations after returning from Vrindavan, where they were impressed by the ‘Vasant Purnima' celebrations.
The celebration is held at Ganjam as it has the oldest Radha Krishna temple in the area. Centuries ago, the deities were congregating on a village road which got transformed into a busy national highway stretch. Yet, neither the administration nor the police broke the tradition and shift the venue of the festival to any other place even during the British era.