Dasara festivities begin on a grand note in Vijayawada

30K devotees visit Kanaka Durga Temple on Day-1 of celebrations
Artistes play drums on Day-1 of Dasara celebrations atop Indrakeladri in Vijayawada on Monday | Prasant Madugula
Artistes play drums on Day-1 of Dasara celebrations atop Indrakeladri in Vijayawada on Monday | Prasant Madugula

VIJAYAWADA: The annual Dasara festivities at Sri Durga Malleswara Swamy Varla Devasthanam (SDMSD) atop Indrakeeladri began on a grand note here on Monday. A significant number of pilgrims turned up for the celebrations from the early hours of Monday.

The festival began with the temple priests performing traditional rituals Suprabhata Seva at 3 am, Snapanabhishekam at 3.30 am, Balabhoga nivedana at 6.30 am and Nitya archana at 7.30 am.
Devotees from across the State reached the temple premises around 5 am and waited in the queue lines after taking a holy dip in river Krishna at Durga and Krishnaveni ghats.

Governor Biswa Bhusan Harichandan accompanied by his wife Suprava Harichandan visited the temple and offered special prayers to Goddess Kanaka Durga. Deputy Chief Minister and Endowments Minister Kottu Satyanarayana and the temple officials welcomed them with temple honours and accompanied them during the darshan.

About 30,000 devotees visited the temple on the first day of Dasara festivities, according to the officials. Devotees from every nook and corner of Andhra Pradesh and the neighbouring states thronged Indrakeeladri for the festivities.“We are expecting a devotee rush from Friday onwards as the majority of schools and colleges did not announce holidays. Elaborate arrangements have been made for the convenience of the devotees. Devotees have expressed their satisfaction over the facilities available,” he said.

Sri Swarna Kavachalankrutha Durga
Devi avatar on Day-1 | Prasant Madugula

A moderate rush was witnessed in VIP and special darshan queue lines. “In order to reduce rush and confusion among the devotees, we brought an online ticketing system and separate queue lines for the first time during the Dasara festivities. This helped the authorities to ensure the common public to finish their darshan without any delay,” Kottu Satyanarayana added. NTR district Collector S Dilli Rao, Commissioner of Police Kanthi Rana Tata and other officials inspected the temple and interacted with the devotees.

Sri Bala Tripura is the first Goddess in the Tripura Traya and she is the main Goddess of all in the Sri Yantra. The Goddess Kanaka Durga will be draped in red, green and yellow sarees on this day and a naivedyam of payasam (rice kheer) and Gaarelu will be offered to the Goddess. On this day, girls between 2 and 10 years age are treated as a manifestation of the Goddess and are offered new clothes and gifts under the ‘Balarchana’ programme

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The New Indian Express