The Travancore Devaswom Board has made elaborate arrangements for the smooth conduct of the Pallivetta and Aratt ceremonies in the last lap of the 10-day annual festival at the Lord Ayyappa Temple.
The ritualistic Pallivetta in connection with the annual festival will be held at Saramkuthy on the traditional trekking path on Wednesday evening. The presiding deity will be escorted on an elephant’s back to Saramkuthy after the Athazhauja.
The chief priest (Tantri), Kandararu Maheswararu, assisted by the head priest (Melsanthi), N.Balamurali, will perform the rituals in connection with the Pallivetta at Saramkuthi.
The deity will be escorted back to the Sannidhanam in a ceremonial procession with the accompaniments of a caparisoned elephant, sacred `Marappani’ and various other traditional temple percussion.
The Aratt ceremony, marking the culmination of the annual festival will be held at the specially prepared Aratt kadavu in river Pampa on Thursday forenoon.
Kerala State Electricity Board will release water into river Pampa from the Kullar dam in the upstream reaches on Thursday in order to raise the water level in the Aratt kadavu for the smooth conduct of the Arattu ceremony, according to official sources.
The Ayyappa Temple will be closed after the Athazhapuja, later, on Thursday evening.
The ceremonial Vilakkinenzhunnellippu procession as part of the festival came to a close on Tuesday evening.
Padipuja, Pushpabhishekom and Udayasthamanapuja were performed at the Ayyappa Temple on Tuesday.
Hundreds of devotees witnessed the special rituals, especially the Utsavabali, performed at the Sannidhanam on Tuesday. The Utsavabali too will come to a close on Wednesday.