Hyderabad, August 9: The annual ‘Bolu’ festival, dedicated to the Hindu goddess of power Mahankali or Kali and intended to ward off evil and usher in peace, was celebrated here on Sunday in a traditiol manner with thousands of devotees participating in the festivities. Telanga ministers were among prominent persolities who offered prayers at the Mahankali temples in the old city of Hyderabad. Devotees including a large number of women thronged Mahankali Temple Lal Darwaza, the historic Akkan Madan temple at Hari Bowli in Shah Ali Banda and other temples to the deity in different parts of the city.
Home Minister N. rasimha Reddy, Endowments Minister Indrakaran Reddy, legislative council chairman Swamy Goud, MPs K. Kavita, and V. Hanumantha Rao and Telanga Congress president Uttamkumar Reddy were among those who performed puja at Lala Darwaza temple. Attired in their best, women queued up at the temples to offer Bolu, which consists of cooked rice, jaggery, curd and turmeric water, carried in steel and clay pots on their heads. Declared a state festival last year by the Telanga government last year, Bolu is being celebrated on a large scale with pomp and gaiety.
Various government departments have made all necessary arrangements for the devotees visiting the temples like drinking water, sanitation, roads and uninterrupted power supply. The two-day festivities will conclude on Monday with ‘Rangam’, the oracle prediction at Akkan Madan temple followed by a combined procession on a caparisoned elephant, carrying ‘ghatam’ of the goddess Mahankali.
The procession will pass through the main thoroughfares of the old city including historic Charmir before reaching Delhi Darwaza Matha Temple near Musi River where the ghatam will be immersed. Bolu is celebrated in parts of Hyderabad and Secunderabad during Ashada masam (July-August). Also known as Ashada Jatra Utsavalu, it is celebrated on three different Sundays in different places in the twin cities. Last Sunday, it was celebrated in Secunderabad. It is believed that the festival was first celebrated over 150 years ago following a major cholera outbreak. People believed that the epidemic was due to the anger of Mahankali and began offering bolu to placate her. (IANS)