Sabarimala festival season begins


Pilgrims at the Sabarimala temple in Kerala
Pilgrims at the Sabarimala temple in Kerala

Five days after the famed Sabarimala temple opened this season, collections recorded have gone up by 22 percent as compared with the same period last year, according to temple authorities.

It was last Monday that the temple doors opened to the pilgrims for the two-month-long Sabarimala festival season. Last season during the first five days the total collections by sale of appam and aravana (payasam) was Rs.1.43 crore and this time it has jumped to Rs.2.64 crore.

The temple authorities said that compared with the previous season, there has also been a 20 percent increase in the number of pilgrims arriving during the same period.

Situated on the mountain ranges of the Western Ghats at an altitude of 914 metres above sea level, the Sabarimala temple is located four km uphill from Pamba in the Pathanamthitta district, which is around 100 km from the capital city.

The temple, which bars the entry of women who have attained puberty, is accessible only on foot from Pamba.

Last season, the official estimates reveal that more than 4.5 million pilgrims visited the temple and this year the authorities are expecting an increase of 10 percent.