TAMIL NADU

Faith and frenzy at the temple car festival in Erode

Visiting divinity:Devotees pulling the car of Periya Mariamman temple on the streets of Erode on Wednesday.– Photo: M. Govarthan  

A sea of believers, ardent in prayer, participated in the famous annual car festival of the Arulmighu Mariamman Temple here on Wednesday.

The festival is an important event in the fortnight-long festivities that take place in the last Tamil month of Panguni.

It is about the deity's tour through the town in a flamboyantly decorated car.

Huge ropes are tied to the sides of the traditionally built car, which is pulled through important streets of the town by the devotees amidst frenzied chants and prayers.

Long wait

On Wednesday, the devotees, from different parts of the district and the neighbouring Namakkal, were seen waiting in front of the temple since early morning for the festival to start.

And when the majestic car rolled out, they stood by the roadside in reverence, offering prayers and showering petals on the car's path.



Tour

Some even joined the team that pulled the car through important streets of the town, including the Periyar Street and Agraharam.

Members of various organisations and senior government officials took part in the festival.

Special rituals were performed in the temple to mark the occasion.

Temple authorities had also made elaborate arrangements for the event.