All set for Thrissur Pooram

 

The stage is set for the mother of all festivities, Thrissur Pooram at the Sree Vadakkumnatha Temple on Sunday. The entire temple town was decked up on the eve of the annual event.
Authorities have made elaborate arrangements for the smooth conduct of the 36-hour-long pooram, which promises to be a grand affair with elaborate arrangements underway at the participating temples here.
The famous shrine and other temples associated with the pooram were glowing on the eve of the festival following illumination of the precincts of the temples.
The festivities will begin on Sunday morning with the city waking up to receive processions from Kanimangalam Sastha, Karamukku Bhagavathy, Neythilakkaavu Bhagavathy, Lalur Bhagavathy, Panamukkampalli Sastha, Choorakkottukavu Durga, Ayyanthole Karthyayani and Chembukkavu Karthyayani temples.
The pooram starts with the ceremonial entrance of ‘Kanimangalam Sastha’ pooram through the southern gopuram at 7 am. This is followed by the arrival of other ‘small poorams’. The ‘Madathilekku Varavu’ ceremony, one of the main attractions of the pooram, in which the idol of Thiruvambadi Bhagavathy is taken from the Thiruvambadi temple to Naduvil Madom at Pazhayanadakkavu, west of the Thekkinkad Maidan, will begin at 7.30 am, to the accompaniment of panchavadyam, led by percussion maestro Annamanada Parameswara Marar. The procession will reach Naikanal around 2 pm.
Following this, the famous free-floating ‘Ilanjithara Melam’ led by Peruvanam Kuttan Marar, will be staged. After the two-hour ensemble, the procession of the Paramekkavu contingent will move through the southern entrance of Vadakkumnatha Temple towards a statue before the Thrissur Corporation office to take part in the renowned ‘kudamattam’ (display of decorative umbrellas) ceremony.
By the time, elephants from Thiruvambadi contingent will enter Vadakkumnatha Temple through its western entrance and exit through the southern entrance to take on Paramekkavu contingent in the competitive ‘kudamattam’ ceremony, which will take place at 5.30 pm.

  

Thrissur/ Thrissivaperoor pooram commonly called ‘the pooram of all poorams’. It is one of the mammoth pooram festival in kerala. It has been celebrated every year in Medam ( April) month, as per malayalam calendar, at Vadakkumnathan temple, situated on famous thekkinkadu maidhanam, a hillock right in the centre of city. It was believed that every year the dynastic gods and goddesses of neighbouring temple met together for a day of celebration. It is a 36 hours continuous pooram attracting a huge mass of people from different places including international tourists. The two dewasoms – Thiruvampadi and Paramekkavu are the two temples are the major temples to make the festival a remarkable one.

The pooram starts at the time of Kanimangalam sasthavu ezhunnellippu in the early morning and followed by the ezhunnellippu of other six temples. One of the major event in Thrissur pooram is “Madathil varavu”- is a panchavadhyam melam, participating more than 200 artists, consists of Thimila, Madhalam, Trumpet, Cymbal and Edakka (Different types of instruments). At 2’ O clock, inside the vadakkumnathan temple starts the famous Ilanjithara melam – a type of melam consists of drum, trumpets, pipe and cymbal.

Just two days before pooram, there is a huge exhibition – Ana chamaya pradharshanam (exhibition of elephant decorations), of both temple at various schools.

The pooram has a good collection of elephants (more than 50) decorated with nettipattam (decorative golden headdress), strikingly crafted Kolam, decorative bells, ornaments and the umbrellas, venchamaram, and alavattam are awesome and it enrich the beauty of elephants and pooram.

At the end of the pooram, after the Ilanjithara melam, both Paramekkavu and Thiruvambadi groups enter the temple through the western gate and come out through the southern gate and array themselves, face to face in distant places. The two groups in the presence of melam, exchange colourful and crafted umbrellas competitively at the top of the elephants – called Kudamattom, which is eye catching attraction of the pooram.

The pooram concluded with a spectacular fire works display, which is held in next day early morning after the pooram. The two temples competitively crack many innovative and charming fire works, which make spectators going into ruptures.

The another notable feature of the pooram is its secular nature. All other communities actively participate and make their prominent role in each and every part of the festival. Most of the pandal works are crafted by muslim community. The materials for the umbrellas for ‘Kudamattom’ are offered by the churches and their members. It is a good sign of secularism which is disintegrating nowadays.

This pooram festival differs from other national festivals like Kumbha Mela of Uttar Pradesh, the Vijayadashami pageantry of Mysor or the Rath Yatra of Orissa. This pooram upholding communal harmony and all people from different religion gives hand to hand to the success of pooram.


History of Pooram 
 
Thrissur pooram is started two centuries back the then ruler of Cochin, Sakthan Thampuran or Raja Rama Varma, in 1798. Sakthan Thampuran, so known for his firm and decisive administration, decided to break tradition and started to celebrate the pooram festival belonging to his region. Before the initiation of Thrissur pooram, Arattupuzha festival was the largest temple festival, which is around 12 Km from the city. Temples near the Thrissur were the regular participants of the Arattupuzha pooram untile they were denied by the chief of Peruvanam Gramam due to the delayed entry of the Thrissur and Kuttanellur termple. This caused the Thrissur Naduvazhi, the chief poojari of Vadakkunnathan, known as Yogadiripad and the Kuttanellur Naduvazhi started the pooram in Thrissur.This pooram started as an act of reprisal quickly lost its charm, after infighting between the two main Naduvazhis. It required the intervention of the ruler to get this right. Sakthan Thampuran unified the 10 temples situated around Vadakkunnathan temple and organized the celebration of Thrissur Pooram as a mass festival. He ordained these temples into two groups, Western group and Eastern group. The Western group as Thiruvambady consisting of Kanimangalam, Laloor, Ayyanthole, Nethilakkavu and the Thiruvambady temple, as the main one. The Eastern group called as Paramekkavu, consisting in addition to Paramekkavu temple, Karamukku, Chembukavu, Choorakottukavu and Panamukkamppilly. The pooram was to be centered around the Vadakkunnathan temple, with all these temples sending their poorams (the whole procession), to pay obeisance to the Shiva, the presiding deity. The Thampuran is believed to have chalked out the program and the main events of the Thrissur pooram festival. It is this historical background that determines the course of the pooram program and it is specifically the ruler's antipathy to the Brahmin aristocracy to open Thrissur pooram for the common man.
 



 

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