The Mangala Temple is located on the banks of the Prachi River at Kakatpur in Puri district of Odisha. It is one of the oldest and most famous Shakti Peethas in Odisha. Devotees come here all year round to pay homage to the goddess Maa Mangala, the presiding deity of the temple.
The Kakatpur Ma’amangala temple was built 500 years ago by the family of a local zamindar, Rayachudamani, with prominent sages. The temple was built by Panchanan Mitra Rayachudamani (1548 AD).
According to popular legend, the idol of Mother Mars was hidden in the depths of the Prachi River for a long time. One day, as the floodwaters receded in the river, Nauria was stranded in the middle of the river and was rescued. But he did not know how he had escaped, and once in the morning he received his mother’s dream order to rescue his idol from the riverbank and arrange a puja in the nearby village of Mangalpur. Shortly afterwards, a black crab jumped into the Prachi River. A long, long time passed, but the crow never returned, as he was stranded on the side of the river, where Nauria had found a statue of Ma Mangala.
In our local language, the English words “crows” mean “crows” and “detentions”. So the two words were put together to form a ‘cockroach’. After a while, the village of Mangalpur was renamed Kakatpur. The mother was named Kakatpur Mangala. The temple is built in a special Kalinga style. There is a bed made of solid stone, where Mother Mangala rests every day circling the beams. The bed is carved in such a way that it has been used for hundreds of years. Many deities are worshiped on all sides of the temple. It is a major pilgrimage site for energy worshipers. According to tradition, on the first Tuesday of the month of Chaitra, the sandalwood of Ma Mangala is worn. On this day, after the morning mangal aalti, after bathing, the mother’s face is adorned with sandalwood. Devotees of Ma’amangala come from far and wide to see it.
On the first Tuesday of the month of Baishakh, a unique Jhamuyatra is celebrated at the famous Ma Mangala temple in Kakatpur. The Jhamuyatra is celebrated on the day of Pana Sankranti in the temples of the gods and goddesses of the state, while the Jammu Yatra is held on the fifth Tuesday of the month of Chaitra or the first Tuesday of the month of Baishakh at the only Shakti Peetha Ma Mangala temple. The whole of Kakatpur is crowded for Maa Mangala’s Jhamuyatra. From 2 a.m., the mother’s mangal aalti is bathed in the sandalwood after bathing, followed by the sun worship, ballabh, and morning incense, followed by a public fair at 5 p.m. Millions of devotees enter the temple to worship.
The mentally ill Patuas of the village, in obedience to their mother, march to the temple on the banks of the Prachi River to collect water. The Patuas go to the front of the temple and walk to Jhamu (barefoot in a red fire pit) after praising their mother and following orders from Pujapanda. After Patua, the devotees walk barefoot in the pit of fire. Later, the Patua dance and the Kalika dance are performed according to traditional customs.
Every 12 years, Puri’s renowned Shree Gannath, Prabhu Balabhadra, Goddess Subhadra’s reshuffle begins. At this time, all religious worshipers in Puri worship Ma’mangala as a guide to God. Later, Ma Mangal appears in their dream and shows the three divine ‘Darubrahma’ trees in the right place.