Madurai

Huge crowd at Meenakshi temple ahead of closure for a week

Devotees wait in a long queue to get inside Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple in Madurai on Sunday.   | Photo Credit: G. Moorthy

Even as Madurai district administration has announced closure of all major temples from Monday, a large number of devotees thronged Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple on Sunday.

It was an unusually huge crowd considering that only a moderate number of devotees visited the temple after it reopened once lockdown restrictions were lifted. “I regularly visit the temple. Today, I came for the monthly services. I feel bad that the temple will be closed from tomorrow,” said Eswari, 45, of Munichalai. She felt that more devotees would like to visit the temple in the next one week for the various festivals.

Shopkeepers on Chithirai, Avani Moola, Masi and Veli streets are also worried about the closure of the temple as majority of them depend on devotees and tourists for their business. “Mine is a small textile shop and closure of the temple means no business for me,” said K. R. Kannan, 53. For him, the two lockdowns in the last two years has been a nightmare. “I don’t know how I am going to pay salaries to my staff, run the family and pay for my children’s studies,” he said.

He wanted the district administration to find alternative ways like regulating the crowd with e-registration for darshan at the temple. “We can restrict the crowd to the optimum level to maintain social distancing. Thereby, devotees will be happy and livelihood of small traders like us will also be taken care of,” Mr. Kannan said.

Collector S. Aneesh Sekhar has announced that besides Meenakshi temple, Sundararaja Perumal Temple and Pazhamuthir Solai Murugan Temple in Azhagarkoil and Subramaniyaswamy Temple in Tirupparankundram will also be closed till July 8.


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Printable version | Sep 23, 2021 3:08:31 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/huge-crowd-at-meenakshi-temple-ahead-of-closure-for-a-week/article35667402.ece

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