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Ladies' Sabarimala enters the Guinness Book
October 12, 2006 15:14 IST
Last Updated: October 12, 2006 15:52 IST
The annual Ponkala festival of the Attukal Bhagavathi temple in Thiruvananthapuram, one of the world's biggest devotional congregations of women, is all set to make it to the Guinness Book of World Records.
The festival, which draws over a million women in a single day in March, will go into the record books as an event attended by more than a million people, an official of the Attukal Bhagavath Temple Trust said.
"We have already received a letter from the authorities. There would be a function soon where the formal announcement would be made," the Temple Secretary K P Ramachandran Nair told PTI.
About 12 lakh women attended the last festival, but the Guinness authorities have taken the figures from 1997, when about 15 lakh women turned up, he said.
The local tradition has it that Attukal Bhagavathi is the divine form of Kannagi, the heroine of Tamil classic Silappadikaram.
The Ponkala festival, the temple lore says, celebrates the hospitality accorded to Kannagi by women at Attukal when she was on her away to Kodungallur after destroying the ancient city of Madurai to avenge the injustice meted out to her husband Kovalan.
The temple is also known as Women's Sabarimala as only women are allowed to perform the ritual on the Pooram day of Malayalam month Kumbham, which mostly coincides with March in the Western Colander.