Elaborate arrangements for Maha Shivaratri festival
HYDERABAD: Elaborate arrangements have been made in all Shiva temples in the state for the Maha Shivaratri Festival on February 18, Saturday.
All Shiva temples including the Pancharama Kshetras and Srisailam have been decorated and illuminated and queue lines set up. Shiva Ratri celebrations have already started in some temples.
APSRTC will run special buses to the temples from different towns from Friday evening. The temples have made arrangements to provide darshan from 3am on Saturday. The devotees will reach the temples by evening of Friday to take the darshan in the early hours of the morning the next day.
Temple priests said the famous “Lingodbhava Kalam’’ (auspicious time for Lord Shiva) starts at 11 pm Saturday and extends to 12.15 am Sunday.
Kandavilli Phanikumar, the chief priest of the famous Lord Bhimeswara Swamy temple, one of the Pancharama Kshetras of Konaseema district, told Deccan Chronicle that the first Abhishekham would be performed by 3 am on Saturday with milk and water. Devotees would not be allowed to bring in honey, curd, coconut water etc for this purpose.
He said there will be no “Lingodhbhava Kalam’’ to the temple for years. As per the advice of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham Seer, curd made out of cow milk is offered to the gods as Neivedyam and it would be distributed to the devotees on the same day.
Yalla Suryanarayana, executive officer of the Ksheera Rameswara Swamy temple at Palakollu, one of the Pancharama Kshetras, said nearly 70,000 devotees may take a darshan of Lord Shiva on Mahasivaratri day. The first darshan would be allowed to the devotees by 3 am.
The Pancharama Kshetra officials like Amara Lingeswara Swamy at Amaravathi, Someswara Swamy temple at Bhimavaram, KumaraRama Bhimeswara Swamy temple at Samalkot and other temples like Lord Kukkuteswara Swamy at Pithapuram known as Pada Gaya, the Someswara Swamy temple at Kotipalli, the Bhadrakali Sametha Veereswara Swamy temples at Pattiseema and Muramalla, the Mukteswara Swamy temple at Mukteswaram etc have made arrangements for the grand events.
Eluru joint collector Arun Babu said the events are held for three days from Feb 17 and five parking lots have been readied. About 90 personnel have been deployed for this purpose. Some 100 RTC buses will run to Pattiseema from various areas.
Srisailam temple authorities said four queue lines have been formed for the devotees to take darshan of Lord Shiva. Three types of darshans -- Free Darshan’ and two special darshans at a fee of Rs 200 and Rs 500 -- are arranged for the devotees. A special queue line has been laid for “Padayatra’’ devotees.
All Arjita Sevas have been stopped from Feb 11 and Alankara Darshan of the God is being arranged for the devotees. There will be no free passes for VIPs on Maha Sivaratri day.
Meanwhile, Kakinada RTC district transport officer said 19 special buses will run to Kotipalli from Kakinada and four buses from Yeleswaram to Rajamahendravaram, four buses from Tuni to Pithapuram and six buses from Kakinada-G Mulapolam from Friday evening.
Rajamahendravaram MP, Bharat, urged the municipal officials to clean all the ghats in River Godavari to make it convenient for the devotees to take the holy bath.