Kerala celebrates 'Aarattupuzha Pooram'
Scores of devotees thronged Thrissur to witness one of the oldest annual temple festivals, 'Aarattupuzha Pooram', in which hundreds of caparisoned elephants take part.
Ornaments, umbrellas and other items adorned the elephants as they stood on display for the public at the temples of Parmekavu and Thivambady.
More than 200 artists performed Panchari Melam, the traditional percussion art.
The festival began on Friday during which caparisoned elephants will pass through the streets of Thrissur before reaching the Vadakkunnathan Temple, an ancient Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva.
"It is very unique, specially the colours, the people and the festival. The uniqueness of the festival is in its tradition that is being followed here. So I am very thrilled. I have taken lots of pictures. I will show it to my parents. I would like come back again to this place, once more," said a tourist, Abhishek Dutta.
It is celebrated annually in the month of Medam as per the Malayalam calendar.
The troupe of drummers, roaring crowd, and the decorated elephants, which carried the deities from different temples on their back added to the grandeur of the parade.
This is one of the biggest festivals in Kerala. It is believed that King Sakthan, who ruled Cochin in the late 18th century, started the festival.
(Posted on 13-04-2014)