Thiruvananthapuram: Moolam Thirunal Rama Varma, nephew of late Uthradom Thirunal Marthanda Varma who passed away last month, was on Friday anointed as the new head of the Travancore royal family and the custodian of the Sree Padmanabha Swami Temple here.
The anointing ceremony 'Thirumudikalasam' was held at the 'Kalasamandapam' near the temple. Held as a strictly private function, the ritual was attended only by members of the royal family. After rituals and traditional procedures, Tharananalloor Parameswaran Namboodiripad, the temple tantri (high priest), poured 'punyajalam' (holy water) over him, making him the new head, temple sources said.
"Only tantri, other priests and closed family members were allowed to the venue. After the ritual, the new head arrived at the temple and offered worship. 'Sreekaryakkar', the temple staff, read out a 'neettu' declaring the installation of the new head," temple Administrative Officer Jayasekharan Nair said.
Moolam Tirunal is the son of late Colonel Godavarma Raja and princess Karthika Thirunal, sister of Uthradom Tirunal. The Travancore royal house follows matrilineal system. Ninety one-year old Uthradom Thirunal passed away at a private hospital here following cardiac arrest.
Known as 'Sreepadmanabha Dasas', the royal family and Padmanabha Swamy temple were in news with the discovery of jewellery worth crores of rupees in the temple vaults in 2011.