Pallivetta to be performed at Saramkuthi on Saturday

Hundreds of devotees witnessed Utsavabali at the Sabarimala Ayyappa temple on Thursday.

According to Tantri (chief priest) Kandararu Maheswararu, Utsavabali is an important ritual performed during the annual festival, which began on April 4, to propitiate the Bhoothagana (cohorts) of Lord Ayyappa.

The Tantri, assisted by Melsanthi (head priest) P.N. Narayanan Namboodiri, performed the ritual after the Utchapuja.

A large number of devotees were camping at the holy hillock to witness Utsavabali, which began a day after Kodiyettu (flag-hoisting ceremony marking beginning of the festival).

The ritual will come to a close on Saturday. The ritualistic Pallivetta will be held at Saramkuthi on Saturday evening. The deity will be taken out in a ceremonial procession to Saramkuthi with the accompaniments of a caparisoned elephant and the traditional temple percussion after the Athazhapuja on Saturday.

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