Deity at B R Hill awaits new car

Pipe dream

The nine-day car festival of Sri Biligiri Ranganathaswamy at Biligiriranga Hill in the taluk is scheduled to be held in the month of April, 2013.

However, the car, famously known as Dodda Theru, which could not be drawn by devotees last year due to irreparable damages has not yet been replaced.

The assurances of people’s representatives that the car would be replaced for the next festival has not been fulfilled over the past eight months. Apart from its religious and spiritual significance, the festival depicts the culture of the region.

Devotees from neighbouring districts and states culminate for the festival. It is about oneness among the people from various places. If the festival does not happen, it would be a disappointment for all, said devotees visiting the temple.

Farmers offer a portion of their produce to the temple and shower fistfuls of grains over the car. Newly-married couples throw fruits and sacred greens at the car and pray for happy married life. On May 4 last, as the car could not be pulled by devotees, puja was offered at a vantage point, causing disappointment among the visitors.

Car festival is held twice a year on the hill — the other being Chikka Theru (small car) during Sankranti in January. The Chikka Theru is drawn by Dasas and people from Soliga community around the temple itself. They pray for adequate rainfall and good crop yield.

The district administration has prepared an action plan for Rs 85 lakh to construct a new car. The proposal is pending with the muzarai department.

Temple committee ex-secretary N Doreswamy said he has urged the district administration and people’s representatives to take up overall development of the temple, including replacement for the Dodda Theru.

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