TIRUNELVELI: In comparison to the people from various Indian states, devotees from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana have visited more in numbers on Friday here to take part in the ‘Thamirabarani Maha Pushkaram’, an 11-day-long festival that takes place once in 144 years. After taking holy bath in Thaipoosa mandapam and Kurukuthurai Murugan temple ghats at Thamirabarani river, the devotees offered prayers at Nellaiyappar and Papanasam temples. However, the devotees who visited Papanasam temple were relatively low in numbers compared to Nellaiyappar temple.
Speaking to Express, Narla Srinivas, a businessman hailing from Karimnagar district of Telangana, has said that he brought his family members to celebrate ‘Maha Pushkaram’. “I have been attending all the Pushkaram festivals celebrated in various rivers across India. Despite being from another State, we are well aware of the history of Thamirabarani.” Narla said.
Observing that Thamirabarani river is relatively clean that other rivers Narla said that people here are helpful. He also said that he always see rivers as a goddess and teach the same to his children.
One V Renu from Vijayawada of Andhra Pradesh said that she arrived here upon learning about Thamirabarani river through her grandfather. “I feel that the basic amenities arranged near ghats are not adequate. Also, the Tamil Nadu government should have announced this festival as a government function,” she suggested.
Trains, lodges packed
In view of ‘Maha Pushkaram’ Trains arriving from places including Bangalore, Mumbai and Mysore were densely packed. Occupancies in nearly 250 lodges located in Tirunelveli Junction, Pettai, Meenatchipuram, Vannarapettai, Sripuram, Melapalayam and Palayamkottai have also gone up.
5 lakhs people celebrate in Kanyakumari
Nagercoil: Meanwhile, a good number of devotees have taken holy bath in Thamirabarani, which is regionally known as Kuzhithurai river, near Thikkuruchi on Friday. The festival was celebrated at Mahadevar temple and organised by Shivanadiyar Thirukoottam and various Hindu associations. Along with the devotees, BJP National Women Wing Secretary Victoria Gowri and BJP functionary MR Gandhi took dip.