kettukazcha

Malanada Kettukazcha is held in the Malanada temple in the kara of Edakkad in the village of Poruvazhy in Kerala, in the district of Kollam in Kunnathoor taluk. The Poruvazhy Peruviruthy Malanada temple is without any particular deity, unlike any other temple. It is located on top of a hill, below which there are vast expanses of paddy fields and other agricultural lands. Devotees resort to sankalpam or surrendering before a divine power on a mandapam, instead of the Sreekovli. It is believed that the festival at Malanada temple, known as Malanada Kettukazcha is commemorated in the honour of Kaurava king Duryodhana. The festival, also known as Malakkuda is celebrated during the summer season, usually in the month of March, which coincides with the period where terrestrial works of agriculture are over and people start their paddy cultivations afresh. The time of the festival is during the second Friday during the Meenam month in Malayalam calendar. The malanada Kettukazcha is a part of the Malakkuda festival, which is marked by lot of pageantry and colourful events. During the maha Malakkuda Maholsavam, there is the Kettukazcha after the customary hoisting of the temple flag in form of an umbrella or Oorali.

Festival of Malakkuda in the village of Malanada is heralded by the flag hoisting called as Oorali in the month of Meenam. These days, the festival lasts for about 8 days, all days having some kind of ritual according to Dravidian style. The priests visit the main temple of Gurukkalserry Bhagavathy temple and the devi is invited over to Malanada. Oorali is a symbol of the main priest and this is quite heavily decorated. After the goddess is brought to the mandapam in all grandeur, the festival begins. At this point, the village people start their procession carrying Kettukazcha, which are greatly decorated with various items and taken in a big procession. The process of Kettukazcha is the most spectacular event of this particular festival. The procession is marked by the large Edupu kuthiras. There are hundreds of such designs presented by different villagers in a big procession, which are all taken to the Mandala temple above the hill. These activities are carried out in the paddy fields around the hills. The primary idea about the festival is the huge gathering of onlookers in these paddy fields, which gives a breathtaking view from the top of the hill. Oorali is in charge of visiting all these displays and surroundings and the Kettukazchas are supposed to move around the hill 3 times and rest again in the foothills, before going back the next morning. During this procession, a number of cultural programs are held along with folk dance and music.