Bonalu spirit envelops old city

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Staff Reporter

It will conclude today with `rangam' and immersion of `ghatam'

HYDERABAD: The two-day annual Bonalu festival that began in the old city on Sunday was celebrated with traditional fervour and gaiety.

Festive atmosphere prevailed in the entire city, which reverberated with rhythmic drumbeat and folk songs steeped in Bonalu tradition all day.

`Bonam' offering

Thousands of devotees, mostly women, thronged the ancient Akkanna-Madanna Mahankali temple at Shalibanda, Mahankali temple at Lal Darwaza and scores of other temples in various areas and offered the traditional `bonam' containing cooked rice, jaggery and curd chanting hymns and prayers. `Potharajus' danced to the tunes of drumbeat.

Union Minister A. Narendra, Home Minister K. Jana Reddy, Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee President K. Keshava Rao, Secunderabad MP M. Anjan Kumar Yadav, Congress legislator P. Janardhan Reddy, former Minister T.

Devender Goud, Director-General of Police Swaranjit Sen and other VIPs visited Akkanna- Madanna Mahankali temple.

Security beefed up

The festival will conclude on Monday with the annual oracle prediction, `Rangam' followed by a procession by a caparisoned elephant, carrying `ghatam' of Goddess Mahankali.

The procession will pass through the main thoroughfares of Shalibanda, Pathergatti, Charminar and Nayapul where the ghatam will be immersed in the Musi, according to temple president G. Niranjan.

In the wake of serial train blasts that rocked Mumbai on July 11, the city police made elaborate security arrangements for the smooth conduct of the festival.



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