THRISSUR: The preparations for the annual aanayoottu festival and ‘Ashtadravya Mahaganapati Homam’ on the Vadakkunnathan Temple premises on July 17 are over.
Around 70 pachyderms will be fed with the sumptuous feast as part of the ritual at the Vadakkunnathan temple on Sunday. Puliyannur Sankara Narayan Namboothiri will lead ‘Mahaganapati Pooja.’ The ceremonial feeding, which will start at 9 am, is being performed to ensure the welfare of the elephants.
Kottampilly Narayanan Namboothiri will inaugurate the festival by giving the special feed to one of the jumbos. The jumbos will be fed with jaggery, ghee, rice, coconut, sugarcane, honey, pineapple and parched rice. The elephants will be fed with 500 kg of rice.
The elephants participating in the festival will be protected by constructing a barricade. A team of 10 veterinary experts will supervise the protective measures. This year’s aanayoottu is insured for Rs 1 crore with The New India Insurance Company.
The annual festival was started after the 1982 Asiad. The elephants were faced with some physical problems after returning from the Asiad.
Vadakkunnathan Temple Welfare Committee is organising the festival.