Record bookings for the ritualistic feast this year
The annual season of Vallasadya, a ritualistic feast, at the centuries’ old Sree Parthasarathy Temple on the banks of the river Pampa at Aranmula will come to a close on Wednesday.
The 64-day season of Vallasadya began at the Aranmula Temple on July 31. Ratheesh R. Mohan, secretary of the Palliyoda Seva Sanghom that organises the annual event, told The Hindu that the number of Vallasadya had registered a record rise this year.
According to Mr. Mohan, this year, devotees have booked a total of 494 Vallasadya and 474 of them have already been offered to the presiding deity as on Monday. Suresh Gopi, Malayalam actor; A.V. Ramakrishna Pillai, P. D. Rajan, both Judges at Kerala High Court, and Sreesanth, cricketer, were among those who have offered the ritualistic feast to the deity, he said.
Vallasadya is a sumptuous feast offered to the crew of snakeboats (Palliyodam), at the temple premises at Aranmula, treating them as representatives of the presiding deity.
The devotee who offers the Vazhipadu to the presiding deity invites the crew of the snakeboat of his choice for the Vallasadya at the Aranmula temple.
The boat crew reaches the temple ghats in river Pampa in their Palliyodam to partake of the feast. They will be accorded a customary reception in traditional Aranmula style on their arrival.
The oarsmen circumambulate the temple, singing Vanchippattu, verses in praise of Lord Parthasarathy, before being led to the temple Oottupura (dining hall) for the feast.
The feast is served immediately after the Utchapuja at the temple and the guests demanding more rice and dishes in Vanchippattu style is another attraction.
50 to 64 items
As many as 50 to 64 items are served at the sumptuous feast. The PSS secretary said four Vallasadyas were offered at the Aranmula temple on Monday.
Lipin Raj, a differently abled youth from Kozhencherry who has secured 224th rank in this year’s civil services examination, is among the nine devotees who will be offering the Vallasadya on Wednesday.