Thaipusam is as good as over, and in Penang, the chariot is on its way back to the kovil veedu in Penang Street.
For those that missing out the great moment in Thaipusam 2013 Penang, may review back with the following pictures that captured by those great photographers! Perfect shots!!!
On the eve of Thaipusam (26 January), a silver chariot with the statue of Lord Muruga is led on a procession, accompanied by Chettiar kavadis or devotees carrying peacock feathers. The procession usually starts at 6.00am departing from Kovil Veedu (House Temple) on Penang Street and travel through Buckingham Street, Campbell Street, Penang Road, Transfer Road, Burmah Road, Anson Road, Macalister Road and Ayer Rajah Road until it reaches the Nattukottai Chettiar Temple on Waterfall Road at about midnight. On the day, coconuts are also smashed on the roads before the chariot to symbolise the shattering of one’s ego and to achieve self-realization. Aside from that, devotees also make offerings of fruits, flowers and incense to the deity.
On Thaipusam day (27 January), devotees will undertake a pilgrimage from the Lorong Kulit temple to the new Waterfall temple, Arulmigu Balathandayuthapani Kovil located up on a hill while carrying kavadis as an act of penance and fulfilment of a vow or to develop spirituality. Carrying kavadis can be in the form of carrying Paal Kudam (milk pots) as offerings to god or in the form of physical endurance by piercing the cheeks, tongue, or skin on the body with hooks and Vel skewers. The new Arulmigu Balathandayuthapani temple can accommodate up to 800,000 visitors, a number expected for this year’s Thaipusam Festival. Visitors to the new temple need to climb over 500 steps, which is more than the 272 steps at Batu Caves (Kuala Lumpur).
On 28 January, the silver chariot with Lord Muruga makes a return trip to Kovil Veedu on Penang Street. The return trip from the Waterfall temple will start from 6.00pm till dawn the next day and will take a different route back, passing through Western Road (Jalan Utama), Dato Keramat Road, Magazine Road and Victoria Street. On this day, the same activities that were carried out on the eve of Thaipusam are carried out again along the route of the procession.
During these three-day celebration, one can find beautifully decorated make-shift stalls erected along Western Road and Gottlieb Road, selling traditional Indian goods, souvenirs, decorative items and snacks. Thunderous loud music, singing, dancing and the beating of drums can be seen and heard from afar throughout the festival.
Photographer: SAM LIM
From Canon Malaysia, The Thaipusam Moment Photography Contest.
Penang Thaipusam Location
Waterfall Hill Temple location map
View Waterfall Hill Temple Penang in a larger map
Penang Thaipusam Festival Happening Time and Date
Date: 26 – 28 January 2013
Main Venue: Waterfall Temple
For further enquiries, please contact the Penang Hindu Endowment Board at 04-650 5215.