Nallur CAR festival draws thousands of devotees

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 26 August 2003, 10:54 GMT]
The CAR ("Ther") festival of the historic Nallur Kandasamy Temple in Jaffna town was held Tuesday morning with thousands of devotees from all over the island and from abroad participating, sources attending the festival said.

Nallur Ther
Nallur Ther (Click on the photo for a larger version)
The chief deity Lord Murugan was taken from the temple Tuesday morning around seven to the gaily-decorated CAR, which was surrounded, by large number of devotees.

Several devotees followed the CAR paying their homage by doing "Angapirathshnam". The CAR returned to the main temple around ten in the morning.

Historians say that the history of the Nallur temple is closely intertwined with the history of Jaffna. Prof.Gunarasa of Jaffna University in his book on the Temple says that the Temple was originally constructed in a place called Kurukkal Valavu in A.D 948.

The temple was destroyed in AD 1450 during the invasion of the Sinhalese King Shenpakaperumal (Sapumal Kumaraya).

The same king resurrected the temple and the environments in Muthiraichanthai in 1467. Portuguese commander Philip De Olivereira again destroyed the temple at its foundation in 1621. The Dutch rebuilt a Christian Church at the same premises. In around 1734 Krishnaiyar Suppier established a smaller shrine in Muthiraichanthai in remembrance of the destroyed Kandasamy temple.

During the same period Muslims had constructed a mosque and a statue for the multi-religious sage Sikander at Kurukkal madam. Krishnaiyar Suppier and Maapaaner with the assistance of the Government removed the statue and the mosque and rebuilt the present temple in 1749.


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