The temple town of Melkote in Mandya district came alive with religious fervour as thousands of devotees witnessed the annual ‘Vairamudi Utsav' on Sunday.
The event that concluded in the early hours of Monday saw a procession with the idol of Lord Cheluvanarayanaswamy adorned with the ‘vairamudi' (diamond crown) taken around the town.
Amidst the chanting of hymns , the idol — studded with precious jewels — was taken through the main thoroughfares of the town. The event went on through the night and came to a close around 3.50 a.m.
A sea of humanity witnessed the festival. Devotees had reached the city from Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh on the previous day, while the local residents came there by evening, when the main utsav commenced.
The famed festival is named after the diamond-studded crown, which was donated to Lord Cheluvanarayanaswamy by the Wadiyars of Mysore. It is taken out of the district treasury once a year to mark the utsav. The Mandya district administration had made elaborate arrangements for the smooth conduct of festivities. Special bus services were launched by the KSRTC for the benefit of the public. However, there was a delay of nearly an hour during the preliminary rituals as there was a difference of opinion among the priests over a ritual. However, it was resolved with the intervention of Deputy Commissioner P.C. Jaffer.
Keywords: Vairamudi Utsav