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Meet real life Baahubalis: Puri's Gochikar brothers, the superheroes who pulled Lord Jagannath's Rath

The three majestic wooden chariots carrying the trinity -- Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Devi Subhadra -- rolled on the grand road of Puri as the annual Rath Yatra was held on June 23, but for the first time ever, in the absence of devotees. Though the iconic rath yatra of the Lord of Universe held without devotees, two servitors among others who pulled the trinity have now become a new internet sensation and being compared as Puri's Baahubali.

India TV News Desk India TV News Desk
New Delhi Updated on: June 27, 2020 10:32 IST
Lord Jagannath Yatra, Anil Gochikar, Gochikar brothers
Image Source : TWITTER @ADARSHHAL, @ER_CHANDRAKANTA

Anil Gochikar (Left) and his brother Damodar Gochikar (Right) during Lord Jagannath Yatra in Puri, Odisha.

The three majestic wooden chariots carrying the trinity -- Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Devi Subhadra -- rolled on the grand road of Puri as the annual Rath Yatra was held on June 23, but for the first time ever, in the absence of devotees.

On the directions of Supreme Court, Jagannath Rath Yatra was held without devotees due to pandemic. Only 500 people including servitors, police personnel were allowed to participate in the annual rath yatra.

Though the iconic rath yatra of the Lord of Universe held without devotees, two servitors among others who pulled the trinity have now become internet sensation and being compared as Puri's Baahubali.

Anil Gochikar and his brother Damodar Gochikar, who pulled the chariots during Jagannath yatra, are being called as 'Baahubali' servitors of Puri after photos of their muscled body pulling the chariots went viral.

India Tv - Lord Jagannath Yatra, Puri, Odisha

Image Source : @DEVINDERBJP

'Muscleman' Anil Gochikar pulls chariot during annual Lord Jagannath rath yatra in Puri, Odisha.

Anil Gochikar, an international bodybuilder, become an internet sensation after photos of him pulling the chariot went viral during Jagannath Yatra in 2019.    

The photos of these two men pulling the chariots were circulated so widely on the internet that people started drawing comparisons of two brothers to scenes in one of India's blockbuster film Baahubali.

Muscleman Anil Gochikar won titles such as Mr Odisha, Mr India

As people began talking about Anil Gochikar after he became an internet sensation while pulling chariots during Lord Jagannath Yatra, it came into notice that he was inspired by his brother Damodar and started working on his body 10 years ago. Anil has won titles like Mr Odisha a number of times and also won Mr India title in 2012.

Anil Gochikar who is an international bodybuilder also bagged the title of Mr International Indian in 2016 in Dubai.

Speaking on their experience of serving the Lord during the iconic Jagannath rath yatra in Puri, Anil said what is the use of such body if you don't use it to serve the god, Kalinga TV quoted. 

Anil Gochikar - A strict vegetarian 

Tweeple also shared that Puri's Baahubali Anil Gochikar follows a strict vegetarian diet. He does not even consume eggs, alcohol, or steroids to build his body.

India Tv - Lord Jagannath, Anil Gochikar, Baahubali, Puri

Image Source : TWITTER @ER_CHANDRAKANTA

Anil Gochikar aka Puri's Baahubali is a strict vegetarian.

Gochikar brothers also know as bodyguards of Lord Jagannath

People on Twitter also referred Gochikar brothers as bodyguards of Lord Jagannath. The two men were at the service of Lord Jagannath during the annual rath yatra.

Lord Jagannath Yatra in Puri takes place without devotees due to pandemic 

India Tv - Lord Jagannath Yatra, Puri

Image Source : AP

Priests participate in the annual chariot procession of Lord Jagannath in Puri, India. Priests pulled the three chariots during the annual Rath Yatra of Jagannath temple, as devotees stayed away following a Supreme Court order in view of the coronavirus pandemic.

Following the Supreme Court guidelines, this year, no more than 500 people including servitors and police personnel were allowed to pull the chariots.

The chariots were pulled to Gundicha temple, which is around 3 km away from the main Jagannath temple. Lord Balabhadra's chariot was the first one being pulled from the entrance of the Srimandir towards Gundicha temple.

Taladhwaja, the chariot of Lord Balabhadra, started rolling on Bada Danda (grand road) amidst chanting of hymns, blowing of conchs and the beating of gongs and cymbals. Then, Darpadalana, the chariot of Devi Subhadra, started rolling on Bada Danda.

Lord Jagannath, the cynosure of all, came on his chariot Nandighosa to give Darsan to the devotees amid the chanting of ‘Jai Jagannath'.

Unlike usual practice, when lakhs of devotees jostle with each other to pull the chariots, a limited number of servitors and police personnel got the opportunity to pull the chariots this year.

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