Thrissur in celebration mood; Pooram begins today

via PNS | Thrissur published on May 3, 2009

The procedures of the
Thrissur Pooram, being celebrated on Sunday and Monday, started at dawn
on Saturday with the entry of the goddess of the Nythalakkavu temple
into the Sree Vadakkunnathan temple through the giant door of the
temple’s southern tower. The southern tower door would be closed on
Monday after the Pooram celebrations and would be reopened only for the
next Shivarathri.

For the residents of this city, the cultural
capital of Kerala, Thrissur Pooram, known as the biggest temple
festival in the State, had started at 11.30 am on Monday last with the
flags of the festival going up at the Thiruvambady and Paramekkavu
temples. The belief is that Thirssur Pooram is the celebration of the
visit of the goddesses of Paramekkavu and Thiruvambady temples to Sree
Vadakkunnathan, in whose temple premises the festival is held.

Apart
from Thiruvambady and Paramekkavu Devaswoms, the two main participants
in the festival, eight Cheru Poorams (small poorams) also add colour to
the festival. The actual rituals of the Pooram would start early on
Sunday morning with the Sastha, the deity of the temple at
Kanimangalam, entering the Sree Vadakkunnatha temple. The Sastha would
be followed by the deities from the other seven temples, accompanied by
their Poorams.

A miniature of the Pooram was held on Friday
evening with the two participating sides giving a visual treat to the
people of Thrissur with their sample fireworks displays, small replicas
of the big pyrotechnic shows to be held in the wee hours of Monday,
marking the end of the major phase of the Pooram festival. Tens of
thousands of people had gathered to enjoy the sample fireworks at the
Thekkinkadu Maidan, the grounds surrounding the Sree Vadakkunathan
temple, where the entire Pooram festival would be held.

The two
participating Devaswoms, the Kochi Devaswom Board which administered
the Sree Vadakkunnathan temple, the district administration, the Police
Department, Fire Force, Thrissur Municipal Corporation and the Health
Department have already completed their preparations for the Pooram
festival.

District Collector VK Baby and Corporation Mayor R
Bindu said that Pooram-buffs would not have any sort of difficulties at
Thrissur before, during and after the 30-hour Pooram. Baby said every
precaution had been taken to ensure that the conduct of the Pooram and
the fireworks associated with it safe and secure while Bindu informed
that the corporation had made all arrangements for the comfortable
celebrations.

The Police Department finalised the security
arrangements even before noon on Saturday, by chalking out a detailed
security plan. More than 2,500 policemen under the required number of
officials would be deployed in and around the Pooram venue on Saturday
and Sunday. All the security arrangements were being done under the
supervision of Director General of Police Jacob Punnoose.

The
authorities held detailed examinations of the arrangements for
security, water supply, garbage removal, access to medical facilities.
Mayor Bindu said sufficient number of drinking water taps had been
installed at different points in Thrissur and a system for
round-the-clock garbage removal had been ensured. As many as 250
temporary employees had been deployed for the purpose of garbage
removal.

Experts examined on Saturday about 90 elephants
participating in the festival. Among these, 30 were from the
Thiruvambady and Paramekkavu Devasoms, which would have 15 elephants
each and the rest of the pachyderms belonged to the Cheru Poorams
coming from nearby temples.

Pooram-buffs flowed in to Thrissur
to see the various festival-associated ornaments organized by the two
participating sides. Caparisons, paraslos, Alavattoms, Venchamarams and
other articles were put on display by the two sides. The “Chamayam
exhibition” of the Paramekkavu Devaswom was at its temple hall while
that of the Thiruvambady side was held at the CMS School.

The
biggest attractions of the Pooram are the percussions ensemble
presented by the Panchavadyam and Melam artistes from the two
participating Devaswoms. The Panchavadyam of the Thiruvambady team
would be witnessed by thousands while their Ezhunnallippu comes from
the Thekke Samooha Madhom, known as the Madathil Varavu. The
Ezhunnallippu of the Paramkkavu goddess would be from that temple in
the east of the Sree Vadakkunnathan temple. The first highlight of
Sunday’s celebrations would be the Ilanjithara Melam, led by Preuvanam
Kuttan Marar.

The authorities were expecting a million people
to gather for the Pooram in Thrissur, apart from the several millions
who would see the Pooram on their television sets. Almost all leading
Malayalam TV channels would be telecasting the Pooram celebrations
live.

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