Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy on Friday inaugurated the new wooden chariot of Lakshminarasimha Swamy temple at Antarvedi in East Godavari district.
The 40-feet tall chariot is built at a cost of Rs 1 crore, is completed in record time ahead of the annual ‘Kalyanotsavam’ and also the auspicious occasion of Radha Saptami.
After flying in to reach the temple, Reddy was given a traditional welcome.
Reddy visited the presiding deity and also offered puja and aarti (rituals) to the newly commissioned chariot.
Commemorating the annual ‘Kalyanotsavam’, Reddy participated in the ceremonial drawing forward of the seven-tier high chariot, joined by his cabinet colleagues.
The new chariot is equipped with six large solid wooden wheels and hydraulic brakes. Made with 1,330 cubic ft of wood, a protective shed with iron gates has been readied to secure the divine vehicle.
Six months ago, the decades old chariot got gutted in a fire on September 5 for unknown reasons, leading to an uproar across the state and prompting the government to hand over the case to the CBI.
Without wasting time, the state government started the procedure for building a new wooden chariot which is almost similar to the old one and is ready for the occasion now.
Reddy was accompanied by ministers Chelluboyina Venugopala Krishna, K. Kannababu, P. Vishwaroop and other senior officials, along with rebel Janasena MLA Rapaka Varaprasad.