Sabarimala spruced up for pilgrimage season

Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa is expected to be one of the first pilgrims on Wednesday.

“All arrangements are falling in place for a smooth pilgrimage, and a final review meeting under Chief Minister V S Achuthanandan will take place on Monday at Pamba,” state Devaswom (Temple Administration) Minister Ramachandran Kadannappally said.

“There is an adequate stock of the famed Sabarimala aravana payasam and appam. Like in previous years, all the departments are working in close coordination to see that the pilgrimage is a smooth one,” he said.

“I have personally requested the Railway Ministry in Delhi to attach additional bogies in all long-distance trains for the benefit of the Sabarimala pilgrims. They have even agreed to run special trains,” added Kadannappally.

Called the ‘Mecca of Hindus’, the temple is dedicated to Lord Ayyappa. It is situated on the mountain ranges of the Western Ghats at an altitude of 914 meters above sea level, four kilometers uphill from Pamba in Pathanamthitta district of the state. The temple is accessible only by foot. Close to 10,000  government employees have been deployed to manage the crowds.

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