Katak Chandi Temple

The Katak Chandi Temple is an ancient temple dedicated to the Goddess Chandi, the presiding deity of Cuttack, Orissa. The temple is located nearby the banks of the Mahanadi River. It is famous for the annual Durga Puja and Kali Puja festivals. The Durga Puja festivities are prominent in Maa Katak Chandi temple which takes place for 16 days stating from dark fortnight of Ashwina Krishna Ashtami till Ashwina shukla navami and Vijayadashami. The goddess popularly called as Maa Katak Chandi, sits and rules on the heart of the ancient city.She has four hands holding Paasha(noose),Ankusha(goad),gestures dispelling fear(Abhaya),and granting boon(Varada). She is worshiped as BhuvaneshvariMahavidya (the queen of universe) by Sevayatas belonging to Utkala Brahmins everyday. Maa Chandi is worshipped in various incarnations of Durga during the puja. In Cuttack, people strongly believe Maa Katak Chandi as 'The Living Goddess'. Late Sri Hansa Panda started worshiping the Deity with utmost Niti, Nistha, and Sraddha. As per the scriptures related to Goddess Chandika or Bhuvaneshwari has four hands, showing weapons and gestures as Paasa, Ankusha, Abhaya, Varada. She is worshipped as Bhuvaneswari while chanting Bhuvaneswari Mantra. After Late Sri Hansa Panda, his only son Late Sri Lakshmana Panda started worshipping The Goddess in the same process and procedure. He was blessed with four daughters, named Champa, Tulasi, Mali and Malati. Those daughters were also helping their father Late Sri Lakshmana Panda, in the rituals (Seva Puja) of the Deity. Late Lakshmana panda always prayed Maa Chandi to have a son and after praying so many days,he was blessed with a son, named Sri Dayanidhi Panda, who also followed the footprint of his predecessors. The temple came to lime light during Sri Dayanidhi Panda. Number of devotees increased during his period. He has six sons, who are presently performing rituals (seva puja) of deity. They are namely Sri Narayan Panda, Sri Narahari Panda, Sri Somnath Panda, Sri Chakradhar Panda, Sri Loknath Panda and Sri Ratnakar Panda. The above hereditary sevaks along with their fourteen sons are presently performing the Seva Puja (Rituals) in the Temple. The fourteen sons are Jagabandhu, Dinabandhu, Bikram, Gopal, Sarat Kumar, Sukhadeva, Bhagadeba, Manoj, Trilochan, Susant, Biswaranjan, Ramachandra, Pramod, Ranjit.