Batu Caves expects 1.6 million devotees for Thaipusam

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 4 — The iconic religious Thaipusam venue — the Sri Subramaniam Swamy Devasthanam temple in Batu Caves — will once again see a huge number of...

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 4 — The iconic religious Thaipusam venue — the Sri Subramaniam Swamy Devasthanam temple in Batu Caves — will once again see a huge number of devotees making their way up the 272 steps to complete their vows.

The temple organizing committee is expecting to receive some 1.6 million devotees and visitors, including foreign tourists, during Thaipusam on Thursday.

Committee chairman Tan Sri R. Nadarajah said the celebration, which is into its 166th year, started yesterday.

Temple facilities were upgraded and this included the completion of the fourth staircase to reduce congestion.

“The staircase was opened to the public in December. It will be used by worshippers to fulfill their vows at the upper cave.

“The riverside near the temple has also been upgraded to allow devotees to have their bath before carrying offerings up to the hill top temple,” he said.

Nadarajah said the silver chariot bearing  “Lord Murugan and his two consorts Valli and Theivanai” would start its journey from Sri Maha Mariamman temple in Jalan Tun H.S. Lee on Tuesday at 10 pm.

The chariot is expected to arrive at Batu Caves on Wednesday at 2 pm. The return procession to the Sri Maha Mariamman temple will be on Friday afternoon.

To prevent any accidents during the chariot procession followers are advised to walk along the chariot routes.

“There will be police personnel all along the route to clear traffic.”

He said 1,500 policemen and 400 volunteers would be based at Batu Caves throughout the celebrations which would be attended by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

Meanwhile, Gombak police chief Assistant Commissioner Ali Ahmad said they would deal touts who demand parking fees.

This issue of illegal parking occurs each year during the festival, and police are aware of criminal gangs preying on motorists.

“If anyone demands payment, don’t pay and report to us as soon as possible,” Ali said.

“This is a recurring problem. Police will allow followers and the public to park along both sides of MRR II.”

He suggested the public use public transport to avoid adding to the congestion.

 

this article shared from http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/batu-caves-expects-1.6-million-devotees-for-thaipusam

RELATED BY