Tamil Nadu

Five-foot copper vessel for Maha Deepam getting ready

A cauldron (Koparai) is being readied by two veterans for the festival .

A cauldron (Koparai) is being readied by two veterans for the festival .   | Photo Credit: C. Venkatachalapathy

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Fortnight-long Karthigai Deepam festival to begin today

A 5.3-foot-tall copper vessel will soon be lit at the Annamalai Deepam at Sri Arunachaleswarar Temple, Tiruvannamalai, ahead of the Karthigai Deepam festival.

The fortnight-long festival, which attracts a large number of devotees from far and wide, will be held between November 28 and December 14.

The highlight of the celebrations is the lighting of the ‘Maha deepam’ atop a hillock near the temple. This year, the ‘Maha Deepam’ would be held on December 10. The ‘Bharani Deepam’ would be lit at 4 a.m. and the ‘Maha Deepam’ at 6 p.m. on that day on the 2,668-foot-high Annamalaiyar Hills.

For conducting the ‘Maha Deepam, the copper vessel is being readied by two veterans in this field. While, the septuagenarian, V. Mann Nattar is carrying out this tradition for the past four decades, his son M. Baskar joined him 25 years ago.

“Readying the copper vessel is not an easy job. The entire vessel needs to be checked for the endurance of the heat on Maha Deepam day,” said Mr. Baskar. “We make two portions (bottom and top) and weld it together and fix angles to reinforce stability to the copper vessel. We will complete the work within a few days and hand it over to the temple administration a day before the festival starts,” he added.

The copper vessel was replaced in 2016 as it was used for more than 13 years.

The Maha Deepam glows for more than 10 days, even in the wet climate and is visible from a long distance. More than 25 lakh people are expected to take part.

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Printable version | Dec 9, 2019 10:18:25 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/five-foot-copper-vessel-for-maha-deepam-getting-ready/article30100343.ece

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