Thousands watch Thrissur Pooram festivities

via published on April 28, 2007

THRISSUR: Thousands of people, including foreign tourists, witnessed the ‘kudamattom’ (changing of ornamental parasols) and other festivities of the Thrissur Pooram festival at Thekkinkad Maidan near the Vadakumnathan temple here.

Several artistically designed parasols were raised on the elephants in a competitive sprit between the Thiruvambadi and Paramekkavu temples, the main participants of the ‘pooram’. The people loudly cheered every time a new set of parasols came up.

Just before the start of the ‘kudamattom’ ceremony, tension prevailed for some time as two elephants ran amok. However, they did not cause any harm to the thousands of visitors watching the celebrations and were chained and brought under control.

Earlier, the festivities picked momentum with the parading of 30 caparisoned tuskers, with fifteen each of the Thiruvambadi and Paramekkavu temples facing each other in regal paraphernalia.

The 30-hour-long festivities, going back to about 200 years, started at 0600 hrs. with the processions of smaller temples coming in first.

The’Kanimangalam Shasta’ procession came in first, followed by seven others. The processions moved gracefully towards the Vadakumnathan temple.

The arrival of the Thiruvambadi procession from ‘Brahmaswom Madom’ and the Paramkkavu ‘pooram’ with their ‘elanjithara melam’ (orchestra of Kerala percussion instruments) set the stage for the festivities to begin.

After a break, the celebrations will continue through the night from 2200 hrs., culminating in a dazzling display of fireworks at about 0300 hrs.

The concluding ‘pooram’ ceremony will be held at today noon.

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