Sri Subrahmanya Swami Devasthanam, Tiruchendur, South India

Masi Festival at Tiruchendur Devasthanam

The deities of Lord Murugan with Goddess Valli and Deivanai adorning the temple car of Lord Subramaniaswamy Temple Tiruchendur
Above: The deities of Lord Murugan with Goddess Valli and Deivanai adorning the temple car of Lord Subramaniaswamy Temple Tiruchendur. Below: Devotees carrying 'Mayil Kavadi' to Lord Subramaniaswamy.
devotees carrying 'Mayil Kavadi' to Lord Subramaniaswamy
Thousands of devotees pulling the temple car on the 10th day of Masi festival
Thousands of devotees pull the temple car through the streets of Tiruchendur on the 10th day of Masi festival.

The Tiruchendur Brahmotsavam of Masi during February-March each year wherein all the three temple cars are dragged and the festival is conducted for twelve days, concluding with a Teppam or Float Festival, is much esteemed throughout Tamil Nadu.

It is particularly an occasion for jubilation, as one and all and especially those who could not till recently enter the temple precincts can have his darshan which is so dear to the heart of his bhaktas.

The Pachchai Sattuppadi or the floral decoration of the deity in all green on the eighth morning is especially one which none would wish to miss in the festival.

On the tenth day of the festival, the temple priests and devotees pull the temple car on the car streets of the temple. Three cars are pulled by the devotees in the car festival. The proceedings, which commence at 7.30 a.m., continue until 11.30 p.m.

The Theppam float on the 11th day concludes the Masi festival. These are huge attractions for all the country folk around, who come in large numbers and participate in dragging, and bringing them to their stands.

The great Masi Festival begins at the Tiruvizhā Mandapam in Tiruchendur town from where Devasthanam priests ceremonially bring the Masi festival flag in procession on elephant-back throughout the town and to the Devasthanam where, early the next morning, it is raised on the kodi maram (temple flag pole) amid much pomp and colorful ceremony.

The Masi festival is noteworthy also for the reason that during most of the days, popular discourses on religion are arranged to be given by scholars of merit and also musical performances, in furtherance of the cultural advancement of the congregation, propagation of religious knowledge, and the resuscitation of arts.