The newly built rajagopuram was a major attraction

CHAMRAJANAGAR: A number of people witnessed Lord Venkataramanaswamy's "Makara Sankramana Rathotsava" on Saturday as devotees pulled cars chanting the glory of Lord Venkataramana. The temple has been a place of worship of the reigning deity for more than 500 years. It is situated on the brink of a precipice atop a hillock near Terakanambi hobli in Gundlepet taluk.

This hillock is called "Hulugadri" or "Dakshina Sheshadri (Hulugana muradi)". The car commenced its journey around the temple premises at around 1.10 p.m.

The "rathotsava" was led by devotees and rituals were performed by the priest. The car went around the temple premises before culminating its journey. The annual event attracts thousands devotees from distant places.

Legend has it that the "rathotsava" takes place on the Sankranthi festival when the "Utharayana punyakala" (Sun chariot starts towards north) starts according to Hindu belief.

It is believed that on Sankranthi, the doors of heaven will open. The newly built rajagopuram, which was inaugurated in November 2005 by Governor Chaturvedi, was another attraction.

The height of the rajagopuram was designed 20 meters above the pedestal to blend with the majesty of the hill.

Since the temple is situated atop a hill, the rajagopuram has been designed to endure high winds. The architecture and murals have been built in line with Vaishnava tradition.