Special Correspondent

Thiruvananthapuram: The traditional supreme priest of the Sabarimala temple, Tantri Kantaru Maheswararu, on Tuesday tried to quell the controversy over the Makaravilakku, the light witnessed during the annual temple festival at the hilltop shrine.

Addressing a press conference on his behalf, the Tantri’s grandson, Rahul Easwar, said the Makaravilakku was a fire lit by human hand on the hill neighbouring Sabarimala while the Makarajyothi was a star that appeared in the evening sky on the day marking the culmination of the annual festival.

“It is the star that is worshipped as a celestial light. The Makaravilakku is merely a ritual involving the lighting of a fire as a symbolic act,” he said.