KUALA LUMPUR – Hundreds of Hindu devotees and tourists have begun flocking to Sri Subramaniyar Swami temple in Batu Caves for the Thaipusam celebration.
Children with clean shaven heads can be seen carrying the “kavadi” and “pal kudam” (milk pot) before climbing 272 steps to fulfil their vows to avoid the Thaipusam crowd on Saturday.
K.Kavitha, 34, who was carrying the ‘pal kudam’ said it took her a longer time to reach the top as she had to use the high overhead bridge.
A. Sri Saravanan, 10, who was carrying the ‘kavadi’ for the fifth time said his feet hurt as it was a long climb up the bridge before reaching the temple.
A Bernama survey found that people have started to occupy the temple compound which is littered with stalls ready for business.
Police personnel were also at hand to maintain security.
Tourists Sarah Tomlinson, 25, and Tom Fletcher, 26, from England said he decided to visit the temple after reading an article in a newspaper.
“We feel so amazing just looking at the huge statue. This is totally a different environment, a far cry from our customs and traditions,” said Tomlinson who hoped to return to the temple on Saturday.
More than 1.5 million visitors are expected to converge on the temple for Thaipusam celebration.
The procession of Lord Murugan from Sri Maha Mariamman temple in Jalan Tun H.S. Lee to Batu Caves will start at midnight and reach Batu Caves at 11am tomorrow.
Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor (Syabas) has supplied 18,000 litres of water for the ‘Free Mooru’ feast to devotees visiting the temple.