KOCHI: Authorities have made elaborate arrangements for Sivaratri festival, on Friday, expecting a million devotees to throng the Aluva sandbed. The balippuras with a plywood segregation are auctioned off to priests. The bali tharpanam rate is Rs 50 each. The Travancore Devaswom Board will provide light refreshments for the devotees. Some 750 faithful will be able to offer balitharpan at the three balitharas of the TDB besides 180 of others. Barricades will secure faithful who venture into River Periyar. This would be a green Sivarathri enforcing a ban on plastic even for distributing water.
The Railways has introduced two special trains - the Coimbatore - Thrissur Passenger (T No 56605) reaching Thrissur at 8.45 pm on Friday will be extended to Aluva so as to reach the destination at 10.40 pm. In the return direction, Thrissur- Kannur Passenger (T No 56603) will originate from Aluva at 4.10 am on Saturday. Around 1,500 cops will maintain law and order. Traffic regulations will be in force in Aluva Town from 4 pm to 2 pm next day. The vehicles proceeding to Manalpuram from Angamaly should deviate from Seminarippady and continue via the GCDA road to reach Ayurveda hospital and to Manappuram.
Vehicles from Manappuram should reach Paravoor Junction via old Desam Road. No vehicles will be allowed to Manalpuram from Thottakkattukara junction.
Buses from Varappuzha, Edayar should take a left turn from the Thottakkattukara junction and drop passengers there and then return via Paravoor Junction, UC College and Kadungalloor. Private buses from Angamaly should end the trip at Paravoor Junction. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan will inaugurate an all-religion meet on the occasion.