Thrissur Pooram is an annual Hindu festival held in Kerala, India. It is held at the Vadakkunnathan Temple in Thrissur every year on the Pooram day - the day when the moon rises with the Pooram star in the Malayalam Calendar month of Medam, it is the largest and most famous of all poorams. Thrissur Pooram was the brainchild of Raja Rama Varma, famously known as Sakthan Thampuran, the Maharaja of Cochin. Before the start of Thrissur Pooram, the largest temple festival in Kerala was the one-day festival held at Aarattupuzha known as Arattupuzha Pooram. Temples in and around the city of Thrissur were regular participants. In the year 1798 because of incessant rains, the temples with from Thrissur were late for the Arattupuzha Pooram and were denied access to the Pooram procession. Feeling embarrassed and angered by the denial, the temple authorities raised the issue with Sakthan Thampuran; this made him take the decision to unify the 10 temples situated around Vadakkunnathan Temple and organized the celebration of Thrissur Pooram as a mass festival.
He invited temples with their deities to the city of Thrissur to pay obeisance to Lord Vadakkunnathan, the presiding deity of the Vadakkunnathan Temple. Something unique about this festival is that everything used in the festival is made fresh every year from scratch. There are people who are given the duty to craft the nettipattam. Sakthan Thampuran ordained the temples into two groups, namely "Paramekkavu side" and "Thiruvambady side"; these are headed by the principal participants, Paramekkavu Bagavathi Temple at Thrissur Swaraj Round and Thiruvambadi Sri Krishna Temple at Shoranur road. The two temples are hardly 500 metres apart. Thiruvambadi Sri Krishna Temple Kanimangalam Sastha Temple Laloor Bhagavathy Temple Sree Karthyayani Temple at Ayyanthole Nethilakkavu Bhagavathy Temple Paramekkavu Bhagavathy Temple Chembukkavu Bhagavathy Temple Panamukkumpally Sastha Temple Choorakkottukavu Bhagavathy Temple Pookattikkara - Karamukku Bhagavathy TempleThe Pooram is centered on the Vadakkunnathan Temple, with all these temples sending their processions to pay obeisance to the Shiva, the presiding deity.
The Thampuran is believed to have chalked out the program and the main events of the Thrissur Pooram festival. The pooram begins from the event of flag hoisting; the flag hosting ceremony begins seven days before Thrissur Pooram. All the participating temples of Thrissur Pooram are present for the ceremony, there is a light fireworks to announce the commencement of the festival; the first round of pyrotechnics, known as Sample Vedikettu, happens on the fourth day after the flag hoisting of the Pooram. It is a one-hour show presented by Paramekkavu Devaswoms. Swaraj Round is venue for this starts at 7:15 pm; the display has innovative patterns and varieties of fireworks. Though there were several controversies, permission was granted to conduct Thrissur Pooram in 2017 The golden elephant caparison, elephant accoutrements, ornamental fan made of peacock feathers, royal fan, sacred bells and decorative umbrellas are prepared new by Thiruvambady and Paramekkavu Devawsoms separately. Paramekkavu Devaswom exhibits this at the Agrasala in Thrissur City, the Thiruvambady Devaswom displays the caparisons at the Church Mission Society High School in Thrissur City on the fourth and fifth day before the Pooram.
In 2014 and 2015, it was displayed in Kousthubham Hall at Shornur Road The pooram starts at the time of Kanimangalam sasthavu ezhunnellippu in the early morning and is followed by the ezhunnellippu of other six temples. One of the major events in Thrissur Pooram is "Madathil varavu", a panchavadhyam melam, participating more than 200 artists, with instruments such as thimila, trumpet and edakka. At 2:00, inside the vadakkumnathan temple starts the Ilanjithara melam, consisting of drum, trumpets and cymbal; the pooram has a good collection of elephants decorated with nettipattam, strikingly crafted Kolam, decorative bells, ornaments. At the end of the pooram, after the Ilanjithara melam, both Paramekkavu and Thiruvambadi groups enter the temple through the western gate, come out through the southern gate and array themselves face to face in distant places; the two groups in the presence of melam exchange colourful and crafted umbrellas competitively at the top of the elephants, called Kudamattom, the eye-catching attraction of the pooram.
All poorams conclude at Nilapaduthara near western gopuram of Vadakkunnathan Temple. Another notable feature of the pooram is its secular nature. All religious communities participate and play prominent roles in the festival. While most of the pandal works are crafted by the Muslim community, materials for the umbrellas for Kudamattom are offered by the churches and their members; this harmonious relationship amongst various religious groups, prevalent in the region is something Keralites are proud of. Thrissur pooram main fireworks are well renowned all over the country; this amazing display of fireworks is held in Thekkinkadu Maidan. Thiruvambadi and Parmekavu are the main participants in this event; the main fireworks begin in the early morning of the seventh day. Most pooram enthusiasts stay up all night to get a better view of the fireworks. People come from faraway places to watch this amazing display of pyrotechnics. There are four major firework displays in Thrissur Pooram: the'sample fireworks' on the day before the Pooram, the colorful sparklers that light up the sky by both sides
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