The procession carrying the sacred golden attire, Thanka Anki, for the auspicious ‘Mandalapuja’ at Lord Ayyappa Temple at Sabarimala will set off from the Sree Parthasarathy Temple at Aranmula on Friday morning.
Upto Pampa, the Thanka Anki will be taken in a decorated motorised chariot and from there the Ayyappa Seva Sanghom volunteers will take it on their head to Sabarimala.
The golden attire weighing 420 soverigns was offered to the Ayyappa Temple by the late Sri Chithira Tirunaal Balarama Varma, king of the erstwhile Travancore royal dynasty in 1973 and since then, TDB has been taking the golden attire to Sabarimala in a ceremonial procession for every Mandalapuja.
An Ayyappa idol adorned with the Anki will be kept at the Aanakkottil of the Parthasarathy Temple at Aranmula for the devotees to have darshan from 5 am to 6.30 am on Friday.
The Ayyappa decorated with the golden attire will be taken out in a ceremonial procession, accompanied by a strong contingent of armed police, Travancore Devaswom Board officials and devotees, to Sabarimala by 6.45 am.
The Thanka Anki procession will halt at the Raktakanta Swami Temple at Omalloor near Pathanamthitta on Friday night.
It will reach Muringamangalam Temple near Konni on Saturday evening and will halt at the Kakkattu Koickal Sastha Temple at Perinad on December 25 evening.
The procession will be accorded rousing receptions at different points enroute before it reach Pampa on December 26 forenoon.
The Ayyppa Seva Sanghom volunteers will take the sacred attire on their head to Sabarimala Sannidhanam from Pampa in another procession, later in the afternoon.
Travancore Devaswom Board authorities will receive the Thanka Anki when the procession reaches Saramkuthi on the trekking path. The presiding deity will be adorned with the golden attire prior to the deeparadhana at the Ayyappa Temple, later, in the evening and also prior to the Mandala-puja on December 27. The Mandalapuja will be held along with the Utchauja at 1 pm on December 27.
The Ayyappa shrine will be closed after the Athazha puja, later, at 11.45 pm on December 27, marking the culmination of the 41-day Mandalam festival.
The temple will reopen on December 30 afternoon for the Makarvilakku festival that begins the next day.