Shri Chandi Devi Mata Mandir, Machhail, Padder, Kishtwar:: Machhail Yatra to the famous shrine of Chandi Mata----Is a two-day journey from Atholi via Gulabgarh with a night halt at Chashoti. The famous Machhail Yatra starts Bhaderwah and ends at Machhail where the famous shrine of Chandi Mata is located.
This temple is situated at Padder. The fame of this temple has spread much for some years. Machhail is about 8500 feet above the sea level. This place is surrounded by snow peaked mountains.
Machail Yatra-2007:: Machail Yatra in the hills of Bhadarwah tehsil in Doda district commenced on August 18 2007 from Chinote, Bhaderwah. ‘Thali Poojan’ ceremony for the yatra was performed on August 16 from 5 pm to 8 pm in the premises of Shri Maha Lakshami Mandir, Pacca Danga, Jammu. A religious procession along with the pious ‘thali’ and ‘jyot’ was taken out from the temple on August 17 and passed through Jain Bazar, Link Road, Purani Mandi, City Chowk, Ragunath Bazar and Indira Chowk in Jammu, after which the yatris boarded Bhadarwah bound buses and joined the main yatra commencing on August 18 from Chinote.
The Machhail yatra (pilgrimage) normally begins from Jammu in second week of August and reaches Chandi Dham in Macchail in 2-3 days. The pilgrimage is becoming very popular.
In the month of August a "Chhari" religious procession of "Chandi Mata" starts from Chinote Bhadarwah to Machail Paddar. In which thousand upon thousands of people participate.
Subar Nag and Nagni Melas. On 12th April a grand Mela is held at Sabar Dhar in honour of Sabar Nag in which thousands of Bhadarwahis pay obeisance and on the next day i.e. 13th of April on Ist Basakhi again a very grand Mela of "Nagni Mata" is held at Manthla where thousand of people all around Bhaderwah pay obeisance, sing Bakti songs and dance in order to please Mata for their good crops and health.
In short people of Bhaderwah are very God fearing and offer prayers in their houses and where ever there is a sign of any diety in the Jungles, caves, mountains etc. over and above the worship of above mentioned deities, Lord Shiva’s worship has great importance. Every year twice "Manmahash Yatra" starts from Bhaderwah and ends at Manmahash in Himachal Pardesh. This is a highly revered yatra and takes at least 25 days because devotees have to tried the whole journey on foot.
These yatras mostly come in the month of August. At home in order to get the blessing of Lord Shiva, people perform yagna in the form of Piyala, Bagni, Chanehk, Khadha etc. .
As already said that Naga rulers ruled this valley for a pretty long time so Naga cult immensely effected the Bhaderwahi culture and civilization. People erected their temples on different names such as Vaski Nag temples at Gatha, Nagar, Nalthi, Bheja, Subar Nag temple at Subhar Dhar Mahal Nag in Bhalasa etc. etc.
Every Nag diety has its own "Yatra" but Kailash yatra and Ashapati Yatra are very famous.
This year in 2007, Kishtwar Development Authority (KDA) successfully organized "Tourism Mela" in Padder. This Mela was organized by the Chief Executive Officer KDA, Riyaz Ahmed Zargar and it was inaugurated by District Development Commissioner (DDC), Kishtwar, Shahid Anaytullah. As per a statement issued by R.A. Zargar, the Mela has been organised in view of the annual Machhail yatra so as to promote the tourism potential of Sapphire valley. While inaugurating the Mela, DDC, Kishtwar appealed to the public and tourists to remain cautious about environment pollution. Various departments and local artisans have exhibited local products in Mela. Tehsildar Padder, Vishesh Mahajan has been designated as the Mela Officer.
The route of the Yatra is Baderwah-Pul Doda-Thatri-Machail. The Yatra started as a family tradition by Thakurs in 1980s has become a major Yatra in the District. The Yatra culminates in Chandi Mata ki Mandir in Machail.
On 1st July the Yatra with around 2000-3000 people come to Baderwah and for 1 month and 18 days Trishul stays in Baderwah. Then Machail Yatra starts towards Chandi Mata Mandir. Buses come from Jammu on 16 August (around 16 buses) about 40,000 people participate in the Yatra. People in the region attracted to Chandi Mata. People from all communities participate and Trishuls by Jains. Temple facility created by the Yatra organizers has halls for all communities and even for different sects in Hindu Community.
Trekkers can continue their journey ahead of Machail with a night halt at Rujwass for Zanskar, Paddam and Kargil.
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