Amidst tight security, Veerapandia Kattabomman Vizha was celebrated with fervour and gaiety on Friday evening at Kattabomman Fort in Panchalankurichi, from where he fought the British.

The freedom fighter’s descendants and members of his clan paid respect to Kattabomman on the occasion. At a programme organised by the Department of Information and Public Relations, Project Officer of Mahalir Thittam, Perumal, garlanded the statue of the legendary chieftain and unveiled his portrait at Panchalankurichi. R.Baskaran, District Information and Public Relations Officer, and others attended.

Old age pension was announced for 10 persons. Besides, the Department of Art and Culture organised a folk arts performance.

In a parallel development, the Kambalathar community had organised the 57th Veerasakka Devi Temple festival, a two-day programme. Special prayers and poojas were offered to honour the memory of Kattabomman’s heroic deeds at the same temple.

Inspector General of Police, South Zone, Abhay Kumar Singh, Deputy Inspector General of Police, Tirunelveli Range, Sumit Sharan, Superintendent of Police J.Rajendran and others were camping at the programme venue. Police personnel, deployed in large numbers, were checking vehicles proceeding to Panchalankurichi. The participants had been instructed not to possess any weapon. The participants of over 55 torch relays from various districts, including Tirunelveli, Virudhunagar, Ramanathapuram, and Madurai, reached the venue in the night, police sources said.

Around 1,500 police personnel were deputed in the area, and 104 TASMAC outlets in Ottapidaram, Vilathikulam and the surrounding areas remained closed, sources added.