The Keralas Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple opened its gates for the three-month annual Mandalam-Makaravilakku festival that begins on the first day of the Malayalam month of Vrischikom on Thursday. A large number of Ayyappa Devotees Visit the temple during the festival season every year and this time the Pinarayi Vijayan government has increased security measures and introduced new features.
A hospital with modern facilities, a dining hall that can accommodate 5,000 people, 24×7 water supply, and toilets are the many amenities made available. Also, the Kerala State Transport Corporation (KSRTC) will run extra buses for devotees. The Kottayam Medical College will provide 24 hours free medical service to pilgrims.
The Keralas Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple rituals would begin with the entry performing the Ashtadravya Maha Ganapati Homam Thursday morning, the first day of the Malayalam month Virischikam, Sabarimala Ayyappa temple officials said. The main Neyyabhishekom offering to the presiding deity will begin after the Ashtabhishekom.
The Keralas Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple will be opened on December 30 afternoon for the Makaravilakku festival. This year’s annual Makarvilakku festival to be celebrated on the Makara-Sankranthi day falls on January 14.
The procession carrying the sacred attire, Thiruvabharanam, would set off from the Pandalam Valiyakoickal Sastha temple on January 12. The temple, for which the Cm has sought a national pilgrim center tag, will be closed a week after the Makaravillaku marking the culmination of the annual pilgrimage season.