Bhubaneswar: The administration is gearing up for Rukuna Rath Yatra, the car festival of Lord Lingaraj, the presiding deity of the city, which is held on the occassion of Ashokashtami that is on April 13.

As per sources, as many as 70 carpenters have been appointed for the chariot construction work. Four new Nahakas and two new Oras will be constructed this year. The wheels of the chariots will be constructed in the first phase, said sources.

Every year on the auspicious occasion of Ashokashtami, Lord Lingaraj travels in Rukuna Rath to Mausima temple and the event is celebrated with fervour.

During the Rath Yatra the bronze images of three deities – Chandrasekhar (the representative of lord Lingaraj), Rukmini and Basudeva – are taken out of the temple after all the rituals are performed and are placed on the 35-feet high chariot parked outside the shrine amid loud beating of gongs, blowing of conchs and chanting of hymns.

This festival precedes the world famous car festival of Lord Jagannath at Puri observed in June or July every year.