Photo feature: Aranmula Ashtamirohini valla sadya at the famed Sree Krishna Temple

The sadya is prepared by nearly 300 expert cooks. The devotees offer 'para' (drum filled with rice) at the temple. Photos: Special Arrangement

Ashtami-Rohini Vallasadya, an annual ritualistic mass feast, was held at the Sree Parthasarathy Temple on the banks of the Pampa in Aramula on Wednesday.

Thousands of people, including the crew of various Palliyodams (special boats), took part in the sumptuous feast, which marks the birth anniversary celebrations of the main deity here.

The feast, prepared by a team of 300 cooks, was served in the sprawling temple premises amidst an atmosphere charged with devotion. As a prelude to the feast, a ceremonial parade of the Palliyodams was held in the Pampa and the oarsmen were accorded a traditional reception at the temple ghats here.

Keeping with the tradition, a team of devotees from Chenappadi village in Kottayam had brought in the specially prepared curd to be served for the feast. One of the most curious aspects about the feast is the manner in which the guests demand more servings of dishes in typical Vanchippattu style and the host is supposed to serve whatever item they ask for.

The event also witnessed active participation of the local church, making it a rare show of communal amity.

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