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Chakkulathukavu Pongala today

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Devotees to offer Pongala on the temple premises, its 50-km radius

The small village of Neerettupuram, near Thiruvalla, that houses the famous Chakkulathukavu Bhagavathy Temple is all set for the annual Karthika Pongala festival to be held on Tuesday.

Devotees from far off places are camping on the temple premises and surrounding areas to offer the Pongala nivedyom (rice kheer) to the presiding deity as part of the ritualistic ceremony on Tuesday. The festival will begin with the Ashtadravya Maha Ganapati homom in the morning.

The temple chief priest, Radhakrishnan Namboodiri, will light the main Pongala hearth in front of the temple with the sacred fire brought from the sanctum sanctorum at 9 a.m.

Ayroor-Cherukolpuzha Hindumatha Maha Mandalam president P.S. Nair will formally inaugurate the festival by lighting a ceremonial lamp on the occasion.

Devotees will prepare the Pongala offering in and around the sprawling temple premises and on either side of various public roads in around 50-km radius of the Chakkulathukavu, according to temple administrator Manikkuttan Namboodiri.

The presiding deity, invoked into ‘sreebali’ idols, would be taken out in 50 decorated ‘jeevitas’. Three-hundred priests, led by the temple administrator, would carry the ‘jeevitas’ on their shoulders, to accept the Pongala offerings made by the devotees at different places.

Information centres

Chakkulathukavu devaswom PRO Suresh Kavumbhagom told The Hindu that the temple devaswom had opened information centres on the temple premises and at Thiruvalla, Edathua, Podiyadi, Mannar and so on for helping devotees.

Chengannur MLA Saji Cherian will inaugurate a cultural meet in the afternoon. Mr. Manikkutan Namboodiri will preside and the temple chief priest will deliver the benedictory speech.

The lighting of ‘Karthika-sthambhom’ will be held after the deeparadhana.

Various government departments have made elaborate arrangements for the smooth conduct of the festival.

KSRTC has started operating special services from all its major depots in Alappuzha and Pathanamthitta.

The Kerala Water Authority has made arrangements to provide uninterrupted drinking water supply to Neerettupuram, Thalavady, Thiruvalla, Chengannur, Mannar, Edathua, and surrounding areas.

The police have opened a check-post at Neerettupuram and Podiyadi in connection with the festival.

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2020 12:58:26 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/chakkulathukavu-pongala-today/article30259989.ece

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