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Kodungalloor Bharani

Kodungalloor Bharani is an exotic festival held in the compounds of the temple of Sree Kurumba Kavu Kodungalloor temple, which has the presiding deity of Goddess Bhadrakali. The form of kali prayed in this temple is a ferocious one and so are the rituals held during the Bharani festival. The temple of Kodungalloor is located in the district of Thrissur. Absence of the flag post or Kodi maram is an unique feature of this temple, which in contrast is found in most of the temples in Kerala. Common during festivities of Bharani are the songs sung by the devotees in groups and also the dances by them. blood and gore and rituals akin to violence are seen during the festival season and these are common to the temple premises. Such practices are believed to be in the tradition of the temple. During the festival, lasting for 3 days, people from various communities, converge in the area and participate in the rituals.


Plenty of beliefs and legends surround the origin of the Bharani festival, although most relate to the idea that goddess Kali, after defeating Darikan in a particular battle was very angry. Soldiers who were fighting in the battle, then started to sing songs to make goddess feel a bit better. Since then onwards, devotees gather in the temple premises of Bhagabathy temple and sing the Theri Pattu to appease the gods and also seek redemption and unburden their sins by such rituals. In the month of March, the festival is held, which continues for about 3 days. Festival days start after the local king, who is believed to be the keeper of the temple, arrives in the temple in the Palki. Also, there is the Palaykkal Velan Devi Dasan, who is the healer of the goddess, who sits in a particular place in the temple premises. After the arrival of the king, the sacred umbrella is raised which is known as Chuvanna Pattu Kuda. As soon as the umbrella is raised, it is a sign for the devotees to go on a singing spree and they move around the temple thrice, all the while singing and dancing and even striking the temple with swords and bamboo sticks. These devotees are also known as the Komarams, which represent the ecstatic devotees of the goddess. During these rituals, the devotees are all lashed up in red dress and there are red colours including blood on their bodies. This ritual is known as Kavu Theendal, at the end of which, the devotees all lie down prostrate in front of the king and after the blessings, the king leaves the temple.

Momentum of the Kodungalloor Bharani is initiated about a month before the final 3 days of complete rituals in the temple. People taking part in the rituals have a heavy dressing in red colour with a variety of ornaments. As soon as the rituals are over, the temple is closed down for a week for the cleaning and purification rituals. It is said that the devotees comprise mostly of the farmers, who have arrived in the temple after the harvest season is over and seek redemption in the dance form and songs. This is the time in which they will be redeemed of their sins and start a new life and therefore they take part in the rustic rituals of Kodungalloor Bharani.

Reaching There

The town of Kodungalloor is well connected to many parts of Kerala and nearby states with government run buses. There are both private and government bus stands in the town. Even, devotees can travel in private buses from various towns. Irinjalakuda railway station, at a distance of 22 kms is the nearest railway station to Kodungalloor. Another railways station of Aluva also is nearby, and these two have connections with many other parts of the state. Cochin international airport is located about 35 kms away.

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