N Damodaran Potti – New Sabarimala Melshanti

published on October 17, 2012

 N Damodaran Potti, 47, of Arattukulangara, Vaikom in Kottayam district was on Wednesday selected as the new Melshanti (chief priest) of the Lord Ayyappa temple at Kerala’s mountainous pilgrim centre Sabarimala for a year beginning November 16 through a draw of lots.

The new Melshanti of the Malikappuram Devi temple, adjacent to the Lord Ayyappa shrine, would be AN Unnikrishnan Namboothiri of Karikkode Illom at Karamala in Koothattukulam. The two priests will take charge on November 16, the first day of the Vrishchikam month of the Malayalam calendar, which also marks the start of the two-month annual Sabarimala pilgrimage.

The draw of lots for the selection of the new priests was carried out after the morning Poojas at the Lord Ayyappa shrine on Wednesday in the presence of State Chief Secretary K Jayakumar, who was also the Chief Commissioner of the Travancore Devaswom Board administering the temple, and K Babu, Special Commissioner appointed by the Kerala High Court.

Damodaran Potti is presently the head priest at the Elankavu Bhagavathy Temple of the Travancore Devaswom Board at Vaikom and Unnikrishna Namboothiri is the head priest at the NSS Devi Temple at Kochu Kadavanthra in Kochi.

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