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PN Mahesh Named Chief Priest at Sabarimala, PG Murali Namboothiri Takes Over at Malikappuram

PN Mahesh, hailing from Putillath Mana in Enanallur, Muvattupuzha, was granted the prestigious role of ‘melsanthi’ or chief priest at the revered Lord Ayyappa Temple in Sabarimala, a position he will hold for one year. Currently, Mahesh serves as the head priest of the Paramekkavu Bagavathi Temple in Thrissur.

PG Murali Namboothiri, a native of Anjoor Poongat Mana near Guruvayur, has been appointed as the chief priest of the neighboring Malikappuram Devi temple. Notably, he had been the chief priest at the Ayyappa Swamy Temple in Somajiguda, Hyderabad, for a remarkable 25 years.

The selection for these esteemed roles was determined through a draw of lots conducted in front of the ‘sreekovil’ or sanctum sanctorum of the hilltop temple, situated in Pathanamthitta district. This decision was made after a rigorous interview process by the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB), the governing body responsible for the temple.

In an auspicious ceremony, Vaideh Varma (representing Sabarimala) and Nirupama G Verma (representing Malikappuram) – both children from the Pandalam royal family – drew lots in the presence of TDB officials.

The Sabarimala temple officially opened for Thulamasa puja on Tuesday. Chief priest K Jayaraman Namboothiri conducted the opening rituals in the presence of Tantri Kantar Mahesh Mohan. He subsequently passed on the key to chief priest V Hariharan to open the Malikappuram temple. Devotees were able to seek darshan at the temple during this time. Special pujas, such as Udayastamaya puja, Padipuja, Kalabhabhishekam, and Pushpabhishekam, will be performed at the temple until October 22.


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