Pilgrimage season at Sabarimala to conclude tomorrow

Pilgrimage season at Sabarimala to conclude tomorrow

Pilgrimage season at Sabarimala to conclude tomorrow

The two-month long pilgrimage season of Sabarimala hillshrine, whose climactic phase was marred by the stampede that claimed 102 lives last week, will conclude on Wednesday with the winding up rituals and ceremonies.

Devotees are still coming to the shrine in large numbers and as per the initial estimates over 30 million pigrims had offered worship at the Lord Ayyappa temple since the season began in mid-November.

The 'Makaravilakku' season would conclude tomorrow evening with rituals like Guruthi in the presence of the senior member of the Pandalam royal house, temple sources said.
According to legends,Lord Ayyappa spent his childhood as the adopted son of the Pandalam king,a principality nearly 60 km from the shrine.

The season's last 'neyyabhishekam', anointment of the idol with ghee, was conducted today using the pooja articles brought from Pandalam palace.

After the tomorrow's evening pooja, the royal representative would descend the holy 18 steps leading to the sanctum sanctorum and set out for home without looking back.

The casket of the 'holy jewels' brought from the palace for adorning the idol on the 'makaravilakku' day, would be taken by the escorts accomapanying the Pandalam Raja.

According to temple sources, the flow of pigrims was still continuing after the initial shock left by the stampede tragedy at Pullumedu, the worst disaster ever happened in connection with the pilgrimage.

The devotees would not be allowed to go up from the base camp Pampa from tomorrow evening.

The temple will be reopened for a few days on the first day of 'Kumbham' month of the  Malayalam calendar.