Chennai

Devotees asked to wait overnight for Athi Varadar darshan

Safety first: Lakhs of devotees thronging Sri Devarajaswamy temple in Kancheepuram on Monday; and, above, policemen requesting people to turn back.

Safety first: Lakhs of devotees thronging Sri Devarajaswamy temple in Kancheepuram on Monday; and, above, policemen requesting people to turn back.   | Photo Credit: S_R_RAGHUNATHAN

Over 3 lakh people thronged temple on Monday

With over three lakh devotees thronging the Sri Devarajaswamy temple to worship Athi Varadar on Monday, the Kancheepuram district administration asked a section of devotees to wait for darshan today.

“This was done keeping the safety of devotees in mind. The police asked those who had not entered the temple or queues to stay overnight,” Collector P. Ponniah said.

The Athi Varadar festival began at the temple on July 1 after the idol of Athi Varadar was brought out of the Ananthasaras tank after 40 years.

The idol would be kept for darshan till August 17.

With only 12 more days left for the festival to conclude, more and more devotees are thronging the town. A section of devotees had demanded that the idol remain in the temple.

Roads choked

Sources said that both the Wallajah-Oragadam and Sriperumbudur roads leading to the temple town choked with traffic for over an hour towards the evening.

Interior roads in temple town too were packed and both pedestrian and vehicular movement was restricted.

Ramanujan, a resident of South Mada Street, said they were not able to come out of their homes on Monday. “The traffic was just unimaginable and worse than last week. Ours is a small town and this is just an invasion happening upon us,” he said.

The crowd was so bad that even those in the VIP queue took over five hours to have darshan.

However, since the weather turned pleasant after noon and it began drizzling, there were no issues, explained a source in the temple administration.

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Printable version | May 30, 2020 11:41:34 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/devotees-asked-to-wait-overnight-for-athi-varadar-darshan/article28828361.ece

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