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Bonalu celebrated with fervour in old city

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TRADITIONAL RITUAL: A woman carrying the traditional ‘bonam’ at Charminar during the Bonalu festival in Hyderabad on Sunday.
TRADITIONAL RITUAL: A woman carrying the traditional ‘bonam’ at Charminar during the Bonalu festival in Hyderabad on Sunday.

Staff Reporter

DJs playing popular pop numbers is the attraction this year

HYDERABAD: The annual Bonalu festival in the Old City was celebrated with traditional fervour and gaiety on Sunday amidst tight security.

Thousands of devotees thronged the historic Akkanna Madanna Mahankali temple at Shahlibanda and Simhavahini Mahankali temple in Lal Darwaza, besides other temples in different localities and offered prayers.

The festival began with ‘Mahabishekam’ in the wee hours.

Then women offered ‘bonam’ containing cooked rice, jaggery and curd carried in steel and clay pots while ‘potharajus’ danced to ‘teen mar’ drumbeats in the front.

Decibel levels

As the day progressed, the decibel levels of the festivity rose higher and higher with pulsating folk songs, including the decade-old favourite ‘Maradalu pilla na Maradalu piloo…’ and ‘Mayadari maisammo Maisamma…’ The main attraction this year was the introduction of Disc jockeys playing popular pop albums.

PCC president K. Keshava Rao, Endowments Minister J. Ratnakar Rao, former home minister T. Devender Goud, Director General of Police M. A. Basith, Telugu film actress Vijayashanti and other political leaders also participated.

DCP (South) B. Shivadhar Reddy said elaborate security arrangements were made for the peaceful conduct of the festival.

The festival would conclude on Monday with the oracle prediction, ‘Rangam’ followed by a procession of a caparisoned elephant, carrying ‘ghatam’ of the Goddess Mahankali.

The procession will pass through the main thoroughfares of Shahlibanda, Charminar and Nayapul, where the ghatam will be immersed in Musi River.