Visakhapatnam: Vizianagaram is gearing up for ‘Sirimanotsavam’, a major folk festival of the presiding deity of the town Sri Pydithalli Ammavari Jatara to be held on October 23.
Traditionally, the jatara, the biggest folk festival in north-coastal Andhra Pradesh, is celebrated on the first Tuesday after Dasara every year.
The officials have completed the arrangements for the Tolella Utsavam, the inaugural ritual of the jatara in which lakhs of devotees from across the state and neighbouring Telangana, Odisha and Chhattisgarh take part.
The temple authorities expect a crowd of more than six lakh this year for the festival, where the priest of the temple is carried on a long pole, called Sirimanu, hoisted on a wooden chariot, all around the Vizianagaram fort.
The priest blesses the devotees and the chariot covers the thoroughfares of Vizianagaram.
The Sirimanu procession is scheduled to start at around 3 pm which will cover the thoroughfares from the Vizianagaram Fort to the Pydithalli temple.
District collector M. Hari Jawahar Lal said that temporary toilets have been arranged all around the important areas near the fort and temple for convenience of the devotees and the district administration has been taking all the steps for providing some facilities to the devotees.
Sources said that over 2,000 police personnel will be deployed at strategic places and over 50 CCTV cameras would also be installed to keep the security check....