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Mavadipuram Festival Commences in High Profile; Army Pays Homage to God Skandha
[Updated :: 2010-07-22 10:38:17 Hours]

The ancient Kandaswami Hindu Temple at Mavadipuram, a sacred land symbolizing religious and communal harmony, started its annual festival 16th this month drawing large crowds for daily pooja being conducted from morning to evening.

Troops of the Security Forces Headquarters-Jaffna (SF-J) received blessing of God Skandha to whom this historical Temple is dedicated in a special pooja conducted by Rev. S.D. Shanmuganatha Kurukkal on Wednesday 21st June. Brigadier General Staff SF-J Brigadier B.C.J.A.F. Rodrigo accompanied by Brigadier Administration and Quartering SF-J Colonel R. Shanmuganathan together with civilians present in the Temple paid homage to the temple. Flowers, fruits, incenses and other offerings were made in the name of God Skandha and other deities amidst playing of traditional Naga Swaram, Thavil and Thalam. At the end, Army provided lunch (alms giving) to all present at the pooja. Over 200 soldiers participated in the festival.

The festival is usually held twenty five days and this year it ends on 9th September with water cutting ceremony followed by the car (Ratha) festival.

Devotees attending religious performance this year faced no security restrictions since this famous Kovil site was released from the periphery of High Security Zone (HSZ) by Commander SF-J as Jaffna military Headquarters has designed to shrink the HSZ on instruction of Commander of the Army Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya.

A large crowd of Sinhalese showed their presence at the Mavadipuram Temple today too as this is the first festival being held with the opening of the Kandy-Jaffna A-9 road in December 2009 after 16 years. Magnificence of this temple’s festival is second only to Nallur Kandswami Temple when considered the large number of Hindu Temples scattered all over the peninsula. Not only Tamil Hindus but Sinhalese of other religious beliefs from the south worship this Kovil to get blessing of God Skandha

History of the Mavadipuram Kovil runs back over 5000 years. It is legendry that Maruthapura Valli, a royal lady from South India who first landed nearby Keeramalai to have a medicinal bath in the pond to shape her mongoose face used to worship a small Kovil in this location during her stay here. After regaining a human face as a cure due to bath at Keeramali pond, she went back to India. But her attraction to the place made her return to Mavadipuram and build this large Kovil.

There are six Temples dedicated to God Skandha in the island. They are situated in Kataragama in the southern Sri Lanka, Nallur in Jaffna town, Sella Sannadi at Thondamanaru in Jaffna, Mavadipuram in Kankesanthurai, Manthur Kandasamy and Verugal in the eastern province.

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