Elaborate arrangements have been made for the Karikkakom ‘pongala’ offering ritual to be held on Friday.
Around 500 volunteers have been deployed for the event in which thousands of women are expected to take part. “Some of the volunteers are members of the temple administrative committee while the others are volunteers who came forward themselves to do the service,” said temple administrative committee manager K Surendran Nair.
Various organisations have also made arrangements to provide free food for the women who will turn up for the event.
Five ambulances will also be on service to take care of the emergency medical need. One ambulance each has been given for the service by the KIMS, Ananthapuri and Lords hospitals while the rest provided by Seva Bharati. Around 120 tanks of water will be provided for the devotees. The lighting of ‘pongala’ hearth will be at 10.20 am and the holy water sprinkling ceremony will be held at 2.30 pm. A helicopter will shower floral petals on the ‘pongala’ pots during the holy water sprinkling time. There will be online telecasting of the ‘pongala’ on various local television channels and live broadcasting on All India Radio.
The Karikkakom pongala is the second largest religious gathering of women in the city after the Attukal pongala. The pongala is being held on the final day of the festival of the temple that commenced on April 5 this year.