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Devotees in their thousands throng Sabarimala on its opening day

Thousands of pilgrims thronged the hill shrine of Lord Ayyappa here when the Srikovil of the temple was opened for the 41-day Mandala pooja season on Saturday.

Published: 17th November 2019 06:16 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th November 2019 06:51 AM   |  A+A-

Outgoing Sabarimala melsanthi Vasudevan Nampoothiri opening the sreekovil in the presence of thantri Mahesh Mohanaru | Shaji Vettipuram

Express News Service

SABARIMALA: Thousands of pilgrims thronged the hill shrine of Lord Ayyappa here when the Srikovil of the temple was opened for the 41-day Mandala pooja season on Saturday. Long queues of pilgrims could be seen at the flyover, Lower Thirumuttom and Valiya Nadapanthal when the temple was opened at 5pm. Outgoing melsanthi of the temple Vasudevan Nampoothiri opened the Srikovil in the presence of thanthri Mahesh Mohanaru for the beginning of the first phase of the 2019-2020 pilgrimage season.

Installation ceremony of new melsanthi
The installation ceremony of A K Sudhir Nampoothiri as new melsanthi was performed under the leadership of the thanthri in front of the Srikovil of the temple at 6pm. As part of the ceremony, ‘kalashabhishekam’ was performed by the thanthri on the new melsanthi at 6.30pm.

On conclusion of the kalashabhishekam, the new melsanthi was taken inside the Srikovil by the thanthri and the moolamanthram was whispered in his ear. The new melsanthi will assume charge on Sunday by opening the Srikovil at 3am, marking the beginning of his one-year tenure.

Malikappuram melsanthi
The installation ceremony of Parameshwaran Nampoothiri as the new melsanthi of Malikappuram temple was held under the leadership of the thanthri at Malikappuram Devi temple at 7.30pm on Saturday.
 As part of the installation ceremony, the thanthri performed kalashabhishekam on the new melsanthi.

Kalabhabhishekam on November 17
Kalabhabhishekam will be a special ritual to be performed on the first day of the Mandala pooja season on Sunday. As part of the special ritual, thanthri Mahesh Mohanaru will perform ‘Brahma Kalasha Pooja’ at the Mandapam at 10am in the presence of melsanthi A K Sudhir Nampoothiri. Kalabhabhishekam, marking the conclusion of the ritual on the idol of Lord Ayyappa, will be performed by the thanthri during Uchapooja after the procession carrying the ‘Brahmakalasham’ circumambulates the Srikovil. Pushpabhishekam will be the other ritual to be performed at the temple after Deeparadhana at 7pm.

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