The anniversary of idol installation at the Ayyappa temple at Sabarimala was celebrated on Sunday.

A large number of devotees from different parts of South India thronged Sabarimala to attend various special rituals held as part of the celebrations.

The rituals began in the early morning hours of Sunday with Tantri (chief priest) Kandararu Mahesh Mohanararu performing the auspicious Ashtadravya Ganapathi homom followed by Ashtabhishekom.

The junior Tantri, Mahesh Mohanararu, son of Kandararu Mohanararu, performed the rituals on Sunday as his 89-year-old grand father Kandararu Maheswararu could not turn up owing to age-related sickness.

The temple will reopen on June 14 for the five-day monthly rituals in the Malayalam month of Midhunom that begins the next day. The temple will be closed on June 19 evening.

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