Kurnool: The five-day Ugadi Mahotsavams kicked off at the Srisailam Temple of Kurnool district on Sunday led by the temple executive officer N. Barat Gupta. The festival started with a Yagasala pravesam pooja, Ganapati pooja and Siva sankalpam.
The temple officials offered special poojas to Lord Mallikarjuna Swamy and his consort, Sri Brahmarambika Devi as part of the mahotsavam starting programme.
These utsavams will continue till March 30 and end with the Poornahuti event. On March 29 they will organise Pranchanga patanam programme, the temple EO said.
Elaborate arrangements have been made all necessary facilities provided to devotees coming from various places on the occasion, he added.
Meanwhile, devotees who are traditionally denoted as Mainarulu and Ghanacharulu, offered Mangalasutras and silk clothes to the Goddess Bramarambika Devi on the occasion in the morning after the start of the festival.
The festival begins three days before the Ugadi day it mean, Telugu New Year Day (Chaitra Suddha Padyami) which generally falls in March ending or April first week and this time Ugadi is on April 8.
Nearly five lakhs of pilgrims particularly from Karnataka and Maharashtra states are visiting the temple during these utsavams.
Already over four lakh devotees were arrived in the Srisailam.
The important events of the celebrations are Vahana Sevas to God and Goddess, Alankaras to Goddess, Veerachara Vinyasalu and Car festival.
The celebration begins with several rituals such as Punyahavachanam, Akhanda Sthapana, Mantaparadhana, Ankurarpana and others.
On every day of the celebrations various special poojas like Pratyeka Abhishekam to God, Navavaranarchana to Goddess, Rudrahomam and Chandihomam are performed.
An interesting feature is of that most of the people of Karnataka and some parts of Maharastra visited the temple on the occasion of these utsavams by traveling the whole distance on foot and presents their yearly offerings like tamarind, kumkum, saree, mangala sutram, flowers and others to Goddess Bramarambika Devi.
They also carry Nandikavallu (called as Kambi in Kannada) on their shoulders which consist of Nandi images and offered pooja to it every day during their travel to Srisailam. On the night before Ugadi day a particular group of Kannada devotees called as Ghanacharis express their devotion by performing the Agnigunda Pravesam like walking on the blowing embers.
They are also piercing with sharp pointed weapons to their forehead, tongue, cheek, chin, hands and others. This practice is named as Veerachara Vinyasalu. About 6 lakh pilgrims are expected to visit the temple....