The 10-Day Annual Festival At Sabarimala

The 10-day annual festival at the Lord Ayyappa Temple at Sabarimala began with the ceremonial ‘kodiyettu’ (flag hoisting) on Tuesday.
The temple chief priest (Tantri), Kandararu Maheswararu, assisted by the head priest (Melsanthi), N. Balamurali, performed the rituals preparatory to the kodiyettu ceremony in the morning.
The ceremonial flag was taken out in a customary procession around the sanctum sanctorum, with the accompaniments of a caparisoned elephant, the sacred ‘marappani’ and other traditional temple percussion, prior to the ‘kodiyettu’.
The tantri hoisted the ceremonialflag, after performing the ‘kodimara-puja’ amidst loud chants of ‘Ayyappa Saranam’ mantra.
S. Jagadeesh, Special Commissioner appointed by Kerala High Court; N. Vasu, Devaswom Commissioner, and M. Sathishkumar, Sabarimala Executive Officer, were among those who have attended the kodiyettu ceremony.
Utsavabali darshan
According to Mr Sathishkumar, the auspicious ‘utsavabali’ darshan as part of the annual festival will be held between 12.30 pm and 3.30 pm on all days from March 28 to April 4. Sreebhoothabali is another important ritual held in connection with the annual festival on all these days.
The ritualistic ‘pallivetta’ will be held at Saramkuthi on the traditional trekking path on April 4 evening.
Aratt ceremony
The ceremonial ‘Aratt’ marking the grand finale of the annual temple festival will be held at the specially prepared ‘Aratt kadavu’ in river Pampa on the foothills of Pampa on April 5 forenoon.
The Tantri will perform the ‘Aratt puja’ and ‘Utcha puja’ at the Arattkadavu and the ‘Aratt’ processionwill return to the Sannidhanam, later around 10 pm. The annual festival will come to a close with the Tantri bringing down the ceremonial flag on the temple mast.
The Ayyappa shrine will be closedafter the ‘Athazhapuja’, later.


Kerala Seeks Sponsors For Sabarimala Development

Reviewing the progress of development works in Sabarimala, the Chief Minister said instructions have been given to complete the work of the second floor of the Nadapanthal at Sannidhanam as part of the Sabarimala Master Plan.

L and T has informed that this work would be completed within four months at a cost of Rs 27 crore. 'Rs 26.5 crore has been allotted for the Sabarimala Master Plan till now while Rs 130 lakh has been given as grants to Panchayaths and Rs 118.6 crore for cleaning up activities,' he added.

The Appam and Aravana plants would be renovated at a cost of Rs 12 crore and a fully automatic compact machine for preparing Aravana would be installed before the next season, Dewasom Board President M Rajagopalan Nair said.

Nadapanthal would be erected in the Pampa-Marakootam stretch before the commencement of the next pilgrim season.

Two more queue complex would be completed before Vishu.

Mr Chandy also gave instructions to complete the work of the check dam in the Sabarimala forest as a study report on environmental impact in this regard has been received.

DGP Jacob Punnoose said the advance queue reservation will be doubled by next season. The parking space at Nilakkal would be developed and fee can be collected on a time-bound basis, he added.

A bridge will be constructed at Pengattukadavu. Facilities would be provided for opening an operating centre at Nilakkal for KSRTC. Temporary barricades would be erected at Vandiperiyar and Pullumedu.

Ministers VS Sivakumar, K M Mani, K B Ganeshkumar, Adoor Prakash, Ibrahim Kunju and M K Muneer were among those at the meeting. (UNI)


More Funds For Road Development At Sabarimala

Thiruvananthapuram, Mar 26 : Project for intense maintenance of various major roads leading to Sabarimala will be launched soon.

The work would be completed before the start of the next pilgrimage season in Sabarimala, official sources said here today.

A sum of Rs 800 crore had been sanctioned to the Public Works Department (PWD) for various road development projects, they said.

The government had given top priority for infrastructure development, especially to roads essential for the State's progress, it said. (UNI)


TDB Plans Free Toilets For Sabarimala

Thiruvananthapuram, Mar 26 : For the first time, the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB) has decided to make available toilets free-of-cost to Sabarimala pilgrims during the next festival season.

TDB had invited offers from interested firms, voluntary organisations and individuals to undertake the task of cleaning and preserving the latrines, bathrooms, urinals at Sabarimala and to allot them for the use of Ayyappa devotees at free-of-cost and at their responsibility on sponsorship basis, TDB sources said here today.The TDB will provide water and electricity free-of-cost.The decision was taken with a view to provide more facilities to the devotees as part of various welfare measures.In the previous years, TDB had auctioned these facilities, the sources added. (UNI)


۩ Ayyappa DevoteeZ ۩

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