Thiruvananthapuram: The renowned Attukal Pongala ritual has begun in the capital city and premises on Wednesday. Hundreds of devotees arrived here from all over the state to take part in the ritual.
Pongala began at 10.15 am on Wednesday with the recital of Thottampattu.
Tantri of the temple Thekkedath Kuzhikkatt Parameswaran Vasudevan Bhattathirippad lighted the lamp from the shrine and handed over it to chief priest Vishnu Namboodiri.
The Pongala fireplace in the shrine was lightened first and it was handed over to the devotees to lighten the fireplace set up all over the city.
Pongala Nivedyam blessing will take place at 2.15 in the afternoon.
About 250 priests are appointed in various regions for sanctifying the Nivedyam.
Kuthiyottam ritual will take place by 7.30 pm on Wednesday. 815 boys have taken the vow for participating in Kuthiyottam.
The Goddess will be brought out in a procession at 11.15 at night. The idol of the goddess will be carried by tusker Ananthapadmanabhan accompanied by Kuthiyottam, armed police, Panchavadyam, art forms.
The idol will be taken to Manakkad Sastha Temple in the wee hours of Thursday and the return procession will start after rituals.
The Pongala festival will conclude at 12.15 pm after the traditional rituals.