No serpentine queues of devotees, no traditional gaiety or fervor. Vishu was celebrated with just rituals at famous Sreekrishna Temple, Guruvayur, on Tuesday.
Thousands of devotees used to throng the temple from the eve of Vishu, the harvest festival in Kerala, to witness the Vishukani — an arrangement of auspicious articles including konna flowers, gold, grains and new cloth.
Against the backdrop of COVID-19, the temple conducted the Vishu celebrations with rituals this time. Devotees were not allowed to enter the temple for witnessing Vishukani.
Vishukani, prepared by the chief priest, was unveiled for half an hour from 2.30 a.m. Usual rituals and poojas were held. As Melsanthi was not feeling well, rest of the rituals were conducted by Othikkans. Only a few people, including temple priests, attended the rituals. The Namaskara sadya was also conducted symbolically, which was served for just two people, said K.B. Mohandas, Chairman of the Guruvayur Devaswom.
Along with Onam, Vishu is an important celebration for Keralites, usually celebrated in mid-April soon after the harvest season. Vishukani will be the first thing seen by people as soon as they open their eyes in the wee hours on Vishu day.
Dharsan of Guruvayurappan, the deity of Sreekrishna Temple, considered to be very auspicious by devotees. After the Vishukani, head priest will distribute Vishu Kainneettam (gifting of coins) to devotees.