Ayyappa Shrines in Andhra Pradesh (63)

12/01/2012 History of Lord Ayyappa

In recent times, the maximum number of pilgrims to Sabarimala have been coming from Andhra Pradesh. With the beginning of the Mandala period, the whole of Andhra Pradesh comes under the grip of Ayyappa devotion. In towns and villages Ayyappa devotees are found clad in blue or black clothes. Most of the pilgrims from Andhra Pradesh allow no dilution in the pre-pilgrimage austerities. After a bath in the early morning, they visit temples, conduct prayers and then have self-cooked food. Most of the pilgrims do not even use slippers during the period of austerities. The pilgrims usually conduct special Pooja-s and Bhajan-s by making make-shift Ayyappa shrines with plantains and tender leaves of coconut trees.

There are hundreds of Ayyappa temples throughout Andhra Pradesh including the Ayyappa temple in Seconderabad consecrated in 1975 by the Thanthri of Sabarimala temple. It is situated in a calm area about 9 kms away from Seconderabad Railway Station. There is Annadaana, free distribution of food, during the Mandala period. In Hyderabad city itself there are around ten Ayyappa temples and some of them are located at Mettuguda, E.C.I.L colony and Lal Bazar. There are well-functioning Ayyappa temples elsewhere in Andhra Pradesh including those located in Vishakapattanam, Vijayawada, Gundur, Nellur, etc.

The temples are located in: Anaparthi – Ayyappa Swami Temple, Canal Road; Bhimavaram – Ayyappa Swami Temple, Gunupudi, Ayyappa Swami Temple, Suryanarayanapuram; Dwarapudi – Ayyappa Swami Temple, Canal Road; Hyderabad/Secunderabad – Ayyappa Temple, BaratNagar; AyyappaTemple, Bolarum; AyyappaTemple, BHEL; AyyappaTemple, GTS Colony, AyyappaTemple, HAL Colony, Balanagar, AyyappaTemple, LalBazar, AyyappaTemple, Metluguda, AyyappaTemple, NallaKunta,AyyappaTemple, SanathNagar, AyyappaTemple, Srininagar Colony, Ayyappa Temple, Somajiguda, Ayyappa Temple, Tirumalgiri, Ayyappa Temple, Vivekananda Nagar Colony, Kukat Palli; Kakkinada:Ayyappa Swami Temple, Bani Gudi Jn; Palakollu – Ayyappa Swami Temple, Palakollu; Vijayawada – Ayyappa SwamiTemple,Gollapudi, Yanamalakuduru;Visakhapatanam – Ayyappa Swami Temple, Sheela Nagar, NH5.

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