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`Panguni Uthiram' festival, a crowd-puller

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Staff Reporter

Devotees pull temple car to the accompaniment of percussion instruments, holy hymns and Thevaram songs

Devotees carrying `kaavadis' were thronging the hill templeCar could be pulled easily thanks to cement roads on four giri veedhisCracker festival will be celebrated near Vaiyapuri tank on Thursday night

PALANI: Thousands of devotees witnessed the holy car procession that took place here on Tuesday to mark the 10-day Panguni Uthiram festival.

Holy bathing was performed on the idols at Shanmuga River early in the morning. Later, the idols, placed in a palanquin, were taken in a palanquin to Thiruavinankudi Temple situated at the foothills of Palani.

Later, Lord Muthukumaraswamy was mounted on an ivory palanquin and taken out in a procession around the temple. After special pujas and aradhanas, aesthetically decorated utsavamurthy and goddesses Sri Vallinayaki Amman and Sri Deivanai were mounted on the temple car. Special pujas were performed on the temple car also.

To the accompaniment of percussion instruments, holy hymns and Thevaram songs, devotees pulled the car from its base near Padha Vinayagar Temple.

Two temple elephants also pushed the car. Devotees could pull the car easily thanks to laying of cement roads on the four giri veedhis.

Late start

The car procession started at 5.15 p.m., 45 minutes behind schedule. (The temple authorities had fixed 4.30 p.m. as auspicious time for commencing holy car procession).

Security was beefed up on giri veedhis to regulate the crowd. Devotees carrying `kaavadis' were thronging the hill temple since morning.

Deputy Inspector General of Police (Dindigul Range) A. Alexander Mohan, Collector S. Murugaia, Superintendent of Police M. Kandasamy, HR&CE Joint Commissioner T. Sundaram, and Chairman of Board of Trustees S.V. Balasubramaniam participated.

The festival had commenced with flag hoisting on April 5 and celestial wedding of Sri Murugan with goddess Vallinayaki Amman took place on Monday.

Cracker festival will be celebrated near Vaiyapuri tank on Thursday night. The 10-day festival will conclude with golden rath procession on the hill temple at 7 p.m. on Friday.

Cultural programmes were being conducted at Kudamuzhukku Mandapam at the foothills of Palani hill during festival days.

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