Staff Reporter

PATHANAMTHITTA: The Lord Ayyappa Temple at Sabarimala was opened on Monday afternoon for the five-day monthly puja in the Malayalam month of Midhunom beginning on Thursday.

Melshanti M. Sukumaran Namboodiri opened the sanctum sanctorum at 5.30 p.m. The rituals will begin with the auspicious `Ashtadravya Ganapati Homom' on Thursday morning. According to the temple authorities, `sahasrakalasom' will be held at the temple prior to `utcha puja' on Friday and Saturday. Sabarimala executive officer V. S. Rajagopalan Nair said that a `kalabhabhishekom' would be performed on June 17 and 19. The temple will be closed after `athazha puja' on June 19 evening. A `devaprasnom' to seek divine permission for carrying out development works, including shifting of the aravana preparation unit from the temple complex to Pandithavlom, will begin on Friday morning.