Ponnakalva utsavam celebrated

TIRUCHANUR: The Ponnakalva Utsavam which happens to be the summer resort festival that is being observed on the auspicious Chitra Pournami day during Vasanthotsavam at Tiruchanoor has been celebrated amidst religious ecstacy on Monday.

The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanama (TTD) being the custodian of Hindu Sanatana Dharma, has embarked on a mission of reviving old and traditional rituals that have been dropped altogether, truncated or modified in course of time. One such important festival is Ponnakalva  Utsvam which was revived by TTD in 2007 after a long gap of two-and-a-half decades.

The processional deities of Lord Govinda Raja Swamy, Goddesses Sri Devi, Bhu Devi, Andal Sri Goda Devi, Lord Sri Krishna Swamy and commander-in-chief of Lord Sri Vishwaksena were taken out on a procession from Sri Govinda Raja Swamy temple before sun rise to Ponnakalva Mandapam located in Tiruchanoor road.

Here the priests performed Snapana Tirumanjanam giving celestial bath with different spices to the deities who halted for a summer holiday picnic spot providing solace on religious lines near Ponnakalva (small spring) amidst the chanting of vedic hymns and melam and nadaswaram.

The unique feature is that Snapana Tirumanjanam is performed on Swing (usually deties will be seated on a platform while rendering celestial bath). Hundreds of villagers thronged to see this interesting religious fete.

Later in the evening, since Lord Govinda Raja Swamy happens to be the elder brother of Lord Venkateswara Swamy paves a formal visit to meet the beloved of His brother, Goddess Padmavathi Devi who resides at Tiruchanoor as presiding deity before returning to his home temple.

An interesting custom takes places here where in one main door of the temple remains closed and Goddess Padmavathi greets her husband’s elder brother (brother-in-law) standing behind the closed door as a mark of respect as per the tradition in good old days.

After their celestial meet, Lord returns to Sri Govinda Raja Swamy temple in the evening with which the religious event concludes.

TTD has made elaborate arrangements for this event. Annaprasadam has also been distributed to the devotees who took part in this celestial fete.

TTDs Pedda Jiyangar, Dy EO Chandra Sekhara Pillai and other temple staffs took part in the event. (NSS)

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