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Tirupati: Women perform Varalakshmi Vratam on a grand scale
For women there may not be another month as auspicious as ‘Sravana Masam’ as they eagerly wait to perform several traditional pujas.
Tirupati: For women there may not be another month as auspicious as 'Sravana Masam' as they eagerly wait to perform several traditional pujas. Of them 'Varalakshmi Vratam' takes the centre stage which is celebrated on the Friday that comes before the full moon day.
Women celebrated the festival with fervour and gaiety on Friday following all customs as was disclosed in puranas as they believe Goddess Lakshmi will bring them all fortunes and wealth. There was a belief that worshipping the goddess Varalakshmi on this day is equivalent to praying 'Ashta Lakshmi'. Several temples have made special arrangements for women to perform 'Vratam' there who could not do it at their homes for various reasons. The famous Tataiah Gunta Gangamma Devasthanam in Tirupati was tastefully decorated to mark the special occasion. Following the customary practice, the Goddess and the sanctum sanctorum were specially decorated with bangles.
Other temples like Vasavi Kanyaka Parameswari and Sakthi Chamundeswari among others are also adorned with fresh flowers and jewellery used on special occasions. Women in large numbers throng these temples from the early morning. Several women carried the required puja material with them and performed the 'Varalakshmi Vratam' at temples in batches where the temple managements have arranged priests for the purpose. After the puja, they worshipped the presiding deities.
A woman said that, though there were various ways of celebrating the event, they all follow the most traditional way of arranging a 'kalasam' on which a coconut is well decorated as Goddess Varalakshmi. They attach silver plated eyes, nose and lips of the Goddess on the turmeric applied coconut while some others draw these features with kajal. It is the practice to offer nine varieties of prasadams to offer to goddess on this occasion.
There was hectic activity in the pilgrim city on Thursday and Friday as women went on a shopping spree to buy all essentials to perform puja. Several market locations in the city were seen having a huge rush. The prices of flowers and fruits have skyrocketed as the demand soars up for them.
It may be noted that last year most of the women could not perform puja and visit the temples due to the peak stage of Covid. As the situation was under control this time, women wanted to make use of the occasion to fulfil the traditions and customs. A woman commented, she believes that the Goddess will shower all her blessings on the people to come out of Covid fears from now onwards.