Good response to TTD ‘Kalyanamasthu’ programme
Gift coupon given to all the couples for free darshan of Lord Venkateswara
Sri Durga Malleswara Swamivarla Devasthanam presents utensils and prasadam
VIJAYAWADA: It rained marriages in the city on Sunday, as at least three auspicious times were available for couples to enter the wedlock. Hundreds of marriages were performed in the city and every possible venue was used for the purpose. Purohits and caterers, who were booked well in advance, had a field day and hopped from one venue to another to make the most of the opportunity.
Leading the band was the second phase of ‘Kalyanamasthu’ – the mass marriage programme taken up by the Tirumala Tirupathi Devasthanams (TTD) – in which 52 couples entered the wedlock at TTD Kalyanamandapam.
Amidst Vedic chants and mantras, the bridegrooms placed the mixture of jeelakarra (cumin seeds) and bellam (jaggery) on the heads of brides at 11.20 a.m., the auspicious time fixed by the TTD scholars, to mark the entering of the wedlock. They later tied the three holy knots around the necks of the brides as their relatives witnessed the ceremony with satisfaction.
“The response this year is good, compared to last year. Last year only 22 couples entered the wedlock in the city. This year, these mass marriages have been held in 16 places in Krishna district and as many as 225 couples have got married,” said M.S.K. Prasad, coordinator of Kalyanamasthu.
Besides mangalasutra, the TTD provided silk robes, garlands and free lunch for family members and guests of each couple.
Programme convener Lakshmana Babu said a gift coupon each was given to all the couples who entered the wedlock under Kalyanamasthu for a free darshan of Lord Venkateswara at Tirumala. “The couples, along with their parents, can use the coupon on or before December 15,” he said.
Sri Durga Malleswara Swamivarla Devasthanam presented utensils and prasadam to the newly-wed couples.
Along with hundreds of curious relatives, a few foreigners too witnessed the mass marriages. Venice-based Yakob, dressed in kurta-pyjama, went about capturing the different stages of the ceremony in his digital camera. He felt it was unique to see dozens of couples entering the wedlock under one roof. “It is amazing. But the entire process is too noisy,” he said.
Minister for Fisheries and Animal Husbandry Mandali Buddha Prasad said the government had conceptualised the programme to help the poor families.
Mayor Mallika Begum, Deputy Mayor Anne Prasanna, Vijayawada West MLA Sk. Nasar Vali, UDA chairman Malladi Vishnu and others blessed the couples.