All roads led to Nagore with the beginning of the Kandoori festival in obeisance of the saint of Nagore Dargah, here in Nagapattinam on Wednesday.

The fortnight-long festivities commenced with the procession of flags traversing through the streets of Nagapattinam and culminated in the hoisting of the flags on the five minarets flanking the Dargah, majestically hosting the flags fluttering against the night sky.

The five-century-old Nagore shrine flanked by five minarets houses the tomb of Hazrat Syed Hameed Qadir Vali, in whose reverence the fortnight-long Kandoori festival is marked.

People of all faiths

The festival, which evolved with the ‘renouncement of the temporal world' by the saint, embraced people of all faiths, transcending religious contours.

And as the lore goes, it is that the people of Nagapattinam, who thronged the tomb of the saint, in processions of flags, soon after the holy man's demise.

The history of the Nagore Dargah itself was epitomic of religious oneness – that it was erected on the land benefacted to the saint himself by the Thanjavore King Acchuthappa Naickar on being relieved of physical ailments by the touch of the holy man are just one of the lores of oneness transcending religious hues. And that one of the five minarets was erected by a Maratha king, adds to the secular aura of the holy place.

The 14-day obeisance concludes with the bringing in of the sandal pot, anointing of the sandal paste on the tomb of the saint of Nagore, revered as the “divine light of Nagore.”