Lord Jagannatha's Ratha-yatra Worldwide
BY: AKINCHANA PRIYABANDHU DAS
Jun 12, SARBODAYA NAGAR, PURI, ORISSA (SUN) Srila Prabhupada delivers Lord Jagannatha's Ratha Yatra to the World.
The Ratha-yatra of Lord Jagannatha has been held in Purusottama Ksetra (also known as Sri Ksestra, Jagannatha Puri, Nilacala, Purusottama Puri, etc.), and then in other places in India, since time immemorial. According to the authority of Skanda Purana, Lord Jagannatha appeared in this world in the second part of the Svayambhuva manvantara and the Ratha-yatra began in Satya-yuga of the second manvantara in the present day of Lord Brahma, i.e. during the reign of Svarocisa Manu. It is further mentioned in the Skanda Purana that the Ratha-yatra will continue until the end of the second parardha of Brahma's life. 
However, in the Western world the first Ratha-yatra of Lord Jagannatha took place 36 years ago, in 1967, in San Francisco (USA). The prehistory of this wonderful event is also very wonderful, and it all started in the 1870s, when the first law Graduate of Orissa, Kedarnath Dutt (Kedaranatha Datta), who is now world famous as Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura, became the Deputy Magistrate and Deputy Collector of Puri. 
After completing his studies in Calcutta, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura came to Orissa, because his paternal house was there, in the village Choti, which now belongs to the Kendrapara district. Bhaktivinoda Thakura not only obtained a very good education, but also worked to spread it among his compatriots. For the benefit of the oppressed people of Orissa, he started the first English-medium school in Kendrapara. That Kendrapara High School is still there now, and Bhaktivinoda Thakura was the first teacher and headmaster in 1858. Later he became the first headmaster of the Bhaktamadhu Vidyapitha, a High School in Cuttack, and of the Anglo-vernacular school of Bhadrak (now it is Bhadrak Government High School).
Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura was not only a very learned person, but also a great devotee of Krsna. Many generations of his forefathers worshipped Lord Jagannatha. Therefore, when Bhaktivinoda Thakura was posted as the Deputy Magistrate and Deputy Collector of Puri and was requested to watch over the affairs of the Temple of Jagannatha on behalf of the Government, he was very happy. Many years later, in a letter to one of his sons, he wrote about those days: "Just as the Jagannatha Temple is very lofty and beautiful, so also the service to the Deity was wonderful. To see it was charming to the mind. Daily, from five to seven hundred people were present to see the routine festivals like the evening arati, etc. What bliss! Many kinds of pilgrims came from all over India to attend the religious festivals. Seeing that, one's eyes are soothed. O Lalu, when you behold all these pastimes with a pure heart, only then can these events be understood. There were many celebrations, like Dola-yatra, Ratha-yatra, etc.... I made such great exertions to oversee the pilgrims - how can I write of it all? I would make favourable arrangements for the pilgrims to see the Deity and take prasada, and I would hear the people's complaints.... I spent my time in Puri in great happiness, seeing the festivals, acquiring knowledge and devotion. Purusottama-Ksetra is directly Vaikuntha. What doubt is there?" 
Over and above the aforementioned activities of Bhaktivinoda Thakura, he was the pioneer of the program of propagating the teachings and glories of Lord Krsna throughout the world. Despite his numerous responsibilities as a government officer and a family man, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura has written more than one hundred books and articles in half a dozen languages, protecting and preaching the pure Bhagavata religion. He even sent some of these books to the West and they were well appreciated, especially by the German and American scholars.
Bhaktivinoda Thakura personally went to many places, especially in Bengal and Orissa, to preach the Holy Name, and he inspired and organized Lord Caitanya's followers. Still, he was feeling that, to start a worldwide spiritual revolution he needed a very able assistant. Therefore, he prayed to the Lord to send a "ray of Visnu" and an as answer to Bhaktivinoda's prayers, a very special son was born to him in February 1874 in Jagannatha Puri. An experienced astrologer pointed out all the symptoms of a great personality, a maha-purusa, in the body of the newborn child. Moreover, the boy was born with his umbilical cord wrapped around his neck like a Brahmin thread. Bhaktivinoda Thakura gave him the name Bimala Prasad. Later this son became internationally known as Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Prabhupada, and he is mentioned as such in the largest dictionary of the Oriya language, Purnachandra Bhasakosa.
During the Ratha-yatra in 1874, Lord Jagannath's chariot stopped in front of the place where Bhaktivinoda Thakura was staying with his family (they were renting a house on the Grand Road, quite close to Jagannatha Mandir). Bimala Prasad's mother, Bhagavati Devi, brought the child to Lord Jagannatha's chariot. The boy, who was about six months old, crawled from the lap of his mother to embrace Lord Jagannatha, and an offered garland fell from the neck of the Lord and encircled the child. The anna-prasana and all other auspicious ceremonies for his child were performed with Lord Jagannatha's Mahaprasada.
Then Bhaktivinoda Thakura was posted in another place, and the whole family had to leave Puri. But both Bhaktivinoda Thakura and Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura would come to Puri and spend a lot of time here, especially in their later years. When Bimala Prasad was still a schoolboy, his father brought for him tulasi beads from Jagannatha Puri and initiated him into chanting the Hare Krsna maha-mantra and the Nrsimha mantra. From the beginning of his life Srila Bhaktisiddhanta was perfectly trained and prepared for his great mission. Following in his father's footsteps, he preached vigorously in many languages to spread Lord Caitanya's message throughout India and abroad.
Many educated Indians and even some foreigners became his disciples. In 1933 he sent his first team of preachers to London. At that time one atheistic scholar, professor Bauver, wrote a letter to Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura asking him why he had unnecessarily sent preachers to England. He said they would not give the preachers even one inch of a place in their heart, because they had already driven out the spiritual masters of their country long ago. Srila Bhaktisiddhanta replied: "I do not only wish to have one inch of place in your heart, but to also occupy the whole of Europe, upon which the throne of Purusottama shall be installed." "Thus Srila Bhaktisiddhanta wanted to turn the whole Europe into another Purusottamaksetra!
Next year, on May 19, 1934, at the temple of Alalanatha (Brahmagiri) Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura made the following statement. "akasayana bimana rathare Sri Jagannatha devanku istabarna landanaka nebaku heba"  ("We must take Lord Jagannatha in an airplane chariot to Eastbourne and to London"). It did not happen immediately, but in the late 1960s this transcendental desire and prophecy of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta was brilliantly fulfilled by his great disciple A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, who is known throughout the world as "Srila Prabhupada" and who has introduced the worship of Lord Jagannatha and the Ratha-yatra in London and in many other cities in different countries.
In February 1970 Srila Prabhupada wrote to "My Dear Bhaiji Hanuman Prasad Poddar" (the famous founder of the "Gita Press" with whom Prabhupada had a very friendly relationship): "The Deities worshipped in (ISKCON) temples are Jagannatha Swami with Balarama and Subhadra and Radha- Krsna. When we first start a temple. We start with Jagannath Swami. My Guru Maharaja recommended temples of Jagannatha in these countries, so I was inspired to establish first of all Jagannatha Swami because He is kind even to the mlecchas. Then, when there is opportunity I establish Radha-Krsna murti." 
Again, in 1973 Srila Prabhupada wrote: "I want to see my disciples all over the world introduce two items, opening Radha- Krsna temples and Ratha-yatra festivals." Therefore, it is certainly not by chance that Lord Jagannatha's worship and the Rathayatra have been introduced in the Western world. It may be safely said that in all those countries where ISKCON is well established, Lord Jagannatha is worshipped and the Ratha-yatra is held. Srila Prabhupada spent the first part of his life in Calcutta and there he first met his spiritual master, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, who requested him to spread the message of Lord Caitanya throughout the English speaking world. In September 1965 Srila Prabhupada came to the USA and in July 1966, after almost a year of great struggle and austerity, he established the International Society of Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON). Soon after the first centre was established in New York, Srila Prabhupada brought the message of Krsna consciousness to another important American city, San Francisco. There, in early 1967, Lord Jagannatha made His merciful appearance.
One day a new disciple of Srila Prabhupada (her name is Malati Devi Dasi) purchased a small wooden figure in a shop and came to show it to Srila Prabhupada. As soon as Srila Prabhupada saw the figure, he immediately offered obeisances with folded hands. He then happily told Malati: "You have brought Jagannatha, the Lord of the Universe. He is Krsna Himself. Thank you very much."
After that Prabhupada explained to Malati and other devotees that Krsna in the form of Jagannatha is worshipped all over India but especially in Puri, in the state of Orissa. Countless thousands of pilgrims come there to see and worship Lord Jagannatha along with His brother Balarama and His sister Subhadra. Then Malati remembered that she had seen two similar figures in the same shop. She immediately went to purchase them, and indeed, these were the figures of their Lordships Baladeva and Subhadra. Srila Prabhupada narrated the story of king Indradyumna, Visvakarma, etc. and then asked whether any of the devotees present knew carpentry.
Fortunately, Malati's husband happened to be a very good carpenter and also a disciple of Srila Prabhupada. On Prabhupada's request he carved one-meter-size murtis of Jagannatha, Balarama and Subhadra. After Srila Prabhupada installed these murtis, San Francisco came to be known among his followers as "New Jagannatha Puri." Prabhupada taught the devotees to chant "Jagannathah svami nayana-pathagami bhabatu me" and to perform a very simple worship of Lord Jagannatha. Every day the devotees offered Their Lordships new garlands, arati, etc., and whoever came to the temple brought some gift for Jagannatha, like fruits, sweets, flowers, popcorn (!) etc.
For the devotees of Lord Jagannatha in India it might not be so easy to imagine what it meant to introduce the worship of Jagannatha in a place where no one was a Hindu or had any knowledge of the Vedic culture. Especially in San Francisco of that time, the young people were not Hindus but hippies! But Srila Prabhupada saw them all as spirit souls, parts and parcels of Krsna, and very patiently and lovingly he awakened in those souls their natural and spontaneous inclination to worship Jagannatha with love and devotion. This was most important; and then, step-by-step, Prabhupada introduced a more strict and detailed procedure of worship. These were not only the first Jagannatha Deities worshipped in a temple in the West, but also the first Deities in ISKCON (before that Srila Prabhupada did not install any Deities in America).
As a sannyasi preacher, Srila Prabhupada did not remain very long in one place, and there were so many places all over the world where Krsna consciousness yet had to be introduced ! But when Prabhupada saw that the devotees were upset with his leaving San Francisco (they were crying in the airport), he told them: "If you arrange a Rathayatra for Lord Jagannatha this year, then I shall definitely come to see it." Certainly none of his disciples at that time knew how to construct a Ratha, therefore Srila Prabhupada advised them to rent a truck, make a ratha-like dome and decorate it as nicely as possible. They should put the Deities on this "chariot" and organize a procession, which will move slowly through the most important street in San Francisco. The devotees followed his instructions with great sincerity and enthusiasm and, by the grace of the Lord, the first Ratha-yatra in the Western world (July 1967) was a grand success! A lot of people joined the procession, and the devotees were dancing and chanting and playing the harmonium and karatalas and distributing apples, oranges, bananas, capatis and throwing flowers all around. Everybody was very happy and Srila Prabhupada knew that his Guru Maharaja and Jagannatha Swami were also pleased.
Shortly after that, the Ratha-yatra was introduced in London, and since then, even until now, it has been held in both these places every year without fail. Whenever Srila Prabhupada and his disciples would bring Krsna consciousness to a new place, they would introduce the worship of Lord Jagannatha there. As early as in 1970 the first Rathayatra was held in Tokyo, Japan! Until 1977, Srila Prabhupada used to personally come and participate in ISKCON Ratha-yatras in different cities: several times in New Jagannatha Puri (San Francisco), then in Los Angeles, London, Chicago, Philadelphia, New York.
He recollected that throughout his childhood he would always think how one day, when he becomes grown-up and gets some money, he will buy a ticket to Puri and go to see Lord Jagannatha. Later in his life Srila Prabhupada certainly came to Puri, but even at the tender age of six he conducted his own Ratha-yatra in Calcutta. He asked his father to buy him a toy chariot and help to decorate it, and then under the leadership of the child Prabhupada, who was then known as Abhay, the children of their neighbourhood performed the Ratha-yatra, with chanting, prasadam distribution, etc., and their parents were quite amused and also participated in the festival. Srila Prabhupada commented that while introducing Deity worship and spiritual festivals all over the world he did the same things, which he had learnt and done as a child, with the help of his good parents.
In 1974 Srila Prabhupada wrote to one of his disciples: "This Ratha-yatra festival is very dear to me from my very childhood days, so I very much appreciate your holding this festival in Chicago."  In many other letters, as well as in his books, lectures and conversations, Prabhupada would instruct and inspire the devotees in their loving service to Lord Jagannatha: "So far additions for this year's Ratha-yatra, you may make three rathas, one for each of the Deities. The rest of the details are already there, simply you may supply more money for festoons, decorations, flowers, bells, flags, etc. The spiritual sky is far away but you just try to do it following Jagannatha Puri Rathayatra." 
"Regarding your first question, the bathing ceremony of Lord Jagannatha is observed by His Lordship standing in a bathing tank while each of the devotees in turn offers prayers and obeisances, then pours water to bath the Lord, then offers obeisances and the next devotee follows the same procedure. All the other devotees are holding kirtana throughout the bathing ceremony.... After being bathed, Lord Jagannatha catches fever and at that time you may carry Him along with Balaramaji and Subhadra to my room for recovering. During this time, up to Ratha-yatra, any repairs may be made."  In a lecture given in London on July 12, 1973 Srila Prabhupada again stressed the importance of the Ratha-yatra:
"Just like the other day we held the festival, Ratha-yatra chant and take prasadam. That's all. Organize this all over the world. They will be saved. They will understand Krsna." After the first Ratha-yatra took place in 1967, all new ISKCON centres, especially in the USA, were eager to follow the example of San Francisco. In 1971 Srila Prabhupada participated in the Ratha-yatra in Los Angeles. In summer 1972 the Deities of Jagannatha, Balarama and Subhadra were installed and the Ratha-yatra was held in Philadelphia. It was the first Ratha-yatra on the East Coast of the USA, and Philadelphia became known among devotees as "New Nilachala Dham", just as San Francisco on the West Coast is known as "New Jagannatha Puri." Also, in 1972 Srila Prabhupada installed Jagannatha Deities in Amsterdam. Presently these Deities are residing in a place called Radhadesh (Belgium), but they use to travel and have Their Ratha-yatra in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Den Hague and other cities in Netherlands and Belgium.
During the Ratha-yatra in London, Srila Prabhupada, although at the age of 76 and in very poor health, walked at the head of a grand procession, chanting and dancing with raised hands all the way to the Trafalgar Square, and there he gave a lecture about the Holy name. Next day on the front page of the newspaper "Daily Guardian" a photo of the ratha appeared, with the comment that it rivaled the famous column of Lord Nelson. Gradually, under Srila Prabhupada's guidance, the Ratha-yatra festival was introduced in Canada (Toronto, Montreal), France (Paris), Australia (Melbourne, then Brisbane). In 1976 the Ratha-yatra was held in 10 major cities of the world, and both the media and the city authorities used to note that, unlike other big processions, this festival is always very peaceful and well organized. And Srila Prabhupada said: "This is the real United nations - everybody dancing together and glorifying Jagannatha, the Lord of the Universe!" That year, in 1976, Prabhupada participated in the Rathayatra in New York, when three great chariots, surrounded by thousands of people, moved through "the most important street of the most important city."
The media reports were most favourable. "East Meets West on the Fifth Avenue." (It has become a tradition and this year, 2003, the Ratha-yatra in New York is again held on the Fifth Avenue!) After that Ratha-yatra Srila Prabhupada wrote to his disciple Jayananda Das: "For so long I have wanted to have Ratha-yatra in New York and now at long last you have helped me fulfill this long-cherished dream." 
To arrange a Ratha-yatra always requires the combined endeavours of many dedicated devotees, but this devotee, Jayananda, played an especially important role in arranging the Rathayatras in the West, beginning with San Francisco in 1967. He would personally construct the chariots, buy the bhoga and decorations, make the advertisements and invite people, inspire and organize other devotees and then chant and dance during the festival. In 1977, Jayananda, already terminally ill with leukemia, organized the spectacular Los Angeles Ratha-yatra. The festival was a great success, but Jayananda did not take part in it : he left this world a few months earlier, on the day before Nrsimha-Caturdasi. After Jayananda's demise Srila Prabhupada wrote to his leading disciples:
"Jayananda's death is glorious. It is very good that he stated, what is the use of such a useless body, better to give it up. He has left his body very wonderfully and has been transferred to Vaikuntha.... I am very proud that I had such a nice disciple. If possible Jayananda's picture should be hung on the Ratha of Lord Jagannatha, and in all our temples a day may be set aside for holding a festival in his honour, just as we do on the disappearance days of other great Vaisnavas." 
There were some other disciples of Srila Prabhupada who left this world before him, but only Jayananda was given such great honour by his spiritual master. Twelve years later, in 1989, a high school classmate of Jayananda's attended ISKCON's Rathayatra festival in Durban, South Africa and there a devotee showed him a small photo of Jayananda on Jagannatha's chariot. He was very much impressed and wrote to his other classmates that there, 11,000 miles from Los Angeles, the same Lord Jagannatha was worshipped and all devotees knew how Jayananda had worshipped Him!
Durban is not the only place in Africa where Lord Jagannatha is worshipped. In Kenya, for the last twenty years Ratha-yatra has been taking place annually in Nairobi (the capital), Mombassa and more recently, in Kisumu. Many thousands of people participate and these festivals have been praised and supported by successive governments and leaders down through the years as being an inspiration and bringing together of the many tribes and diverse groups all under one Lord and Master, Jagannatha. Indeed, Lord Jagannatha's glories have been broadcast on each and every continent and His devotees can be found everywhere. In Auckland, New Zealand, Srila Prabhupada has installed the Deities of Jagannatha, Balarama and Subhadra. This year, 2003, Ratha-yatra is held for the first time in Mexico. Lord Jagannatha is worshipped in Brazil and other countries of South America. One of the restaurants run by ISKCON devotees in Buenos Aires, Argentine, is called "Jagannatha Prasadam". Similarly, in Moscow, Russia, there is a very popular restaurant, which is managed by devotees and called "Jagannath Express."
ISKCON temple in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, is known as "Jagannatha Mandir". One of ISKCON's temples and communities in Bangladesh is also called "Sri Jagannatha Mandir", and the place where it is situated is known as Jagannathpur. Both in Malaysia and in Bangladesh Ratha-yatra has been held regularly since 1980's and Muslims together with Hindus happily participate in these festivals. In Zurich, Switzerland, the presiding Deities are Jagannatha, Balarama and Subhadra, the place is known as "New Jagannatha Puri", and the Ratha-yatra is held annually. In Spain, the Ratha-yatra is held in three cities: Madrid, Barcelona and Malaga. In Italy, this festival is held in Milan. And of course in India Lord Jagannatha's Ratha-yatras are arranged by ISKCON devotees in many important places, like Delhi, Mathura, Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, Mayapur, Mumbai, Baroda, Bangalore, etc.
In early 1977, The Nava-kalevara year, Srila Prabhupada came to Orissa to lay the foundation stone of ISKCON temple in Bhubaneswar. On several occasions Srila Prabhupada has explained that because devotees from other countries (even though they had fully adopted the Vaisnava philosophy and way of living) are not allowed into Lord Jagannatha's Temple in Puri, he wants another beautiful temple to be constructed (in Sri Ksetra) where anyone, from any country and any community, can come and have darsana of the Lord of the Universe. This was Srila Prabhupada's last-founded project. Also, in January 1977 in Bhubaneswar he started the English translation of the Tenth Canto of Srimad Bhagavatam.
In November 1977, just a few days before Srila Prabhupada departed this world, his disciple Gour Govinda Swami came from Bhubaneswar to Vrindavan to see him and to narrate various details of the Ratha-yatra festival, which was special in many ways that year in Puri. Srila Prabhupada listened with great interest and asked many questions. He was especially concerned that the great ancient tradition should be continued purely. After many years of determined endeavour the devotees under the leadership of Gour Govinda Maharaja fulfilled Srila Prabhupada's instruction, and the magnificent ISKCON Mandir in Bhubaneswar was opened on Rama Navami in 1991. Since then this temple has grown into a flourishing spiritual, cultural and preaching project that attracts thousands of visitors, especially during the Ratha-yatra, Chandan-yatra, Snanayatra and other festivals.
After the closure of Srila Prabhupada's manifested pastimes, his followers continued to introduce Lord Jagannatha's worship and the Ratha-yatra festival in new places. With the fall of communist regimes, the Ratha-yatra started in East Europe and different parts of the former USSR, including Muslim countries like Kazakhstan. In Budapest, Hungary, and in Sofia, Bulgaria, the Ratha-yatra is held. In Riga, Latvia, there are Deities of Jagannatha, Balarama and Subhadra, and They have Their Rathayatra both in Latvia and in Lithuania.
In Russia, Jagannatha Deities are worshipped in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Rostov, Sochi, Seversk, Tomsk, etc., etc. It should be noted that this article contains only a very incomplete list of ISKCON centres where Jagannatha Deities are worshipped and the Ratha-yatra is held. Besides that, there are hundreds and thousands of devotees all over the world, who may or may not be connected to the local ISKCON centre, but who worship Jagannatha at their homes.
It is not possible for us to mention or even to know all these devotees, therefore we are simply listing some of the places where Jagannatha Deities are installed in a temple and the Ratha-yatra is held. In Saratov, on the great Russian river Volga, the devotees arrange the Ratha-yatra every year since the early 1990s. In the Ural (Ekaterinburg, Perm) and in Siberia (Novokuznetsk, Omsk) the Ratha-yatra is also held annually. In Vladivostok, a major city in the Far East, ISKCON devotees arrange the Ratha-yatra every year since 1991, and the place is known as "New Jagannatha Puri".
Even in some smaller places the Ratha-yatra is held. For example, in Vladimir (an ancient town not far from Moscow) a small group of devotees under the leadership of a very enthusiastic and dedicated lady, whose name is Subhadra Devi Dasi, has been arranging Ratha-yatra festivals annually since the mid 1990s. In Dnepropetrovsk, an important city in the Ukraine, their Lordships Jagannatha, Subhadra and Balarama are worshipped in a beautiful temple and the Ratha-yatra has been held every year since 1993. ISKCON's centre in Dnepropetrovsk is known as "New Purusottama Kshetra."
In "old" places, like North America and the United Kingdom, more cities are joining the "Ratha-yatra club." Besides San Francisco, New York, London and other cities mentioned above, this festival is held in Washington, Atlanta, Baltimore, Detroit, Jersey City, Boston, Boise, Buffalo, Berkeley, Birmingham, Leichester, Manchester, Brighton, etc.
1996 was the year of Nava-kalevara ("New Body" of Lord Jagannatha) and the 100th anniversary of Srila Prabhupada's appearance in this world. That year, as an offering to Lord Jagannatha and to Srila Prabhupada, ISKCON organized the first Ratha-yatra in the history of Scandinavia. It was held in Stockholm, nearby the palace of the king of Sweden, and devotees from other countries also came to participate in this festival.
Our knowledge, time and space being limited, it was not possible for us to mention here all the places throughout the world where Lord Jagannatha's Rathayatra is held. And to give a complete description of all these Ratha-yatras would be impossible even for Ananta Sesa Naga, what to speak of our humble self. Lord Jagannatha's pure devotees always expand His glory, and even this tiny presentation could be made only by their mercy.
ISKCON, Moscow. Russia
Member, Sri Jagannath Research Centre
Sarbodaya Nagar, Puri
1. Based on the explanation which was given by Srila Gour Govinda Swami Maharaja on July 11, 1994 at ISKCON Mandir in Bhubaneswar and published by Gopal Jiu Publications, Bhubaneswar - 1997 in "Sri Krishna-kathamurta" magazine, Vol. 3, No. 1 (special issue: "Ratha-yatra rahasya-tattva"), P. 15.
2. Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura (alias Kedaranatha Datta) has described the genealogy of his father's family line in his work "Datta-vamsa-mala" (1876, in Sanskrit verse). In 1877 he was selected a member of the Royal Asiatic Society for his book "Maths of Orissa" (1860, English prose). From 1870 to 1875 he was posted as Deputy Collector and Deputy magistrate of Puri. These and other facts regarding the lives of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura (1838-1914) and Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura (1874-1937), especially regarding their activities in Orissa, are mentioned in "Choti, the Native Place of Srila Thakura Bhaktivinoda", Bhubaneswar - 1999 by Dr. Fakir Mohan Das (Secretary of the International Thakur Bhaktivinode and Thakur Bhaktisiddhanta Memorial Trust). Some other important sources of such information are as follows:
"Sva-likhita Jivani" (Bhaktivinoda Thakura's autobiography, written in the form of a letter to his son, 1896, in Bengali).
"Thakura Sri Bhaktivinoda" by Sri Nityananda Brahmacari, 1985 (Oriya).
"Sahitya Shaita" by Dr. Basudev Das, 1986 (Oriya) "Bhaktivinoda Dharara Acharya Barga" by Janaki Pattanaik, 1987 (Oriya)
"Kedaranath Datta" by Prof. Banarasi Nath Bharadwaja, Calcutta, 1989 (Bengali)
"The Seventh Goswami" : a biography of Bhaktivinoda Thakura by Rupa-vilasa Das, Washington, USA, 1989 (English)
"A Ray of Visnu": a biography of Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura by Rupa-vilasa Das, Mumbai, India, 1988 (English)
"Thakura Sri Bhaktivinoda" by Dr. Fakir Mohan Das, 1994 (Oriya)
3. Bhaktivinoda's letter to Lalita Prasad Thakura, 1896, quoted on P. 131 of "The Seventh Goswami" by Rupa-vilasa Das, Washington, USA, 1989
4. Sri Nityananda Brahmachari, "Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura", p. 582 Published by Bhaktivinoda Ashram, Berhampur, 1984.
5. "Paramarthi" (Oriya monthly), Cuttack: Sacchidananda Math, issue of February, 1976, p. 34.
6. Srila Prabhupada's letter to Hanuman Prasad Poddar, 5th February, 1970. "Srila Prabhupada Sikshamrita", Vol. 3, p. 2047, published by the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust in Los Angeles, USA, 1992.
7. Srila Prabhupada's letter to Sri Govinda Das, 29th September 1974. Ibid, Vol. 3, p. 1760.
8. Srila Prabhupada's letter to Madhudvisa Das, 14th February, 1970. Ibid, Vol.3, p. 1754.
9. Srila Prabhupada's letter to Yamuna Devi Dasi, June 4th, 1970. Ibid, Vol. 3, p. 1755.
10. Srila Prabhupada's letter to Jayananda Das, 19th July, 1976. Ibid., Vol. 2, p. 1249.
11. Srila Prabhupada's letter to Ramesvara Swami, May 11th, 1977. Ibid., Vol. 2, P. 1250.