The procession leaves early in the morning
By Dushiyanthini Kanagasabapathipillai ~ dushi.pillai@gmail.com

Saturday, July 31, 2010

"Life is a festival only to the wise"~Ralph Waldo Emerson, (1803-1882), (American Poet, Lecturer and Essayist)

The 136th Annual Aadi Vel festival was held in Colombo with colour and glamour. Beautifully decorated wooden carved cart left the Colombo Sammaankodu Sri Kathirvelaayuthaswamy temple in Sea Street left in the morning on July 23rd 2010 and reached the Sammaankodu Sri Maanikka Vinayagar temple at night.

The colourful procession paraded through the main streets in Colombo. Traditional musicians playing the Thavil and Naathaswaram led the procession. The festival wended through many main streets in Colombo after a lapse of 16 years. The colourful procession started from Pettah and travel through York Street, Echelon Square and Galle Road to Bambalapitty, which has been the route for the annual Vel festival for more the 100 years.

“There was a Cholera outbreak in Sri Lanka in 1874, and the British rulers did not allow the devotees to attend the annual festival and be on the Paatha Yathra to Kathirgaamam. The devotees in Colombo got together, and celebrated the festival. This led us to celebrate the Vel festival in Colombo annually” says the Chief Trustee of the Colombo Sammankodu Sri Kathirvelaayuthaswamy temple Mr. A. Manickavasagar.

The idols of Lord Murugan and his two wives Goddess Valli Ammai and Goddess Theivayaanai paraded in the cart and blessed the devotees on the way. Special Poojas were offered during their comfortable stay at Sammaankodu Sri Maanikka Vinayagar temple in Bambalapitty.

The whole temple was decorated beautifully with Yellow colour lights, Banana leaves and fresh flower ganrlands. Devotees thronged the temple in large numbers to welcome and worship the visiting deities and enjoy the traditional musical concerts.

See & read more:  A Charming Aadi Vel Cart Parade in Colombo