KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 31 (Bernama) — Worshippers, devotees and tourists thronged several temples in the country for the annual Thaipusam celebration which was held in a festive atmosphere.
The Sri Subramaniar Swamy Temple in Kuala Selangor had a special guest in Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak while Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi was the guest of honour at the Sri Subramaniar Swamy Temple at Batu Caves near here.
In Kuala Selangor, thousands of Hindu devotees thronged the temple since last night for prayers and to fulfill their vows.
Najib, who arrived at about 11 am, was greeted by the chairman of the temple committee, T. Morgana Sundram. Also present was MIC president Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam, Selangor Barisan Nasional chairman Tan Sri Noh Omar and Kuala Selangor MP Datuk Seri Dr Irmohizam Ibrahim.
The house of worship drew not only Hindus but also local and foreign tourists who wanted to experience the uniqueness of the Thaipusam celebration there compared to that in several other countries.
Worshippers and devotees Bernama met said they were pleasantly surprised to see the Prime Minister at the Thaipusam celebration in Kuala Selangor.
“I have been attending the Thaipusam celebration here for the past 10 years and this is the first time I have seen the Prime Minister here. We are all delighted over his presence,” said M. Raj, 39.
At Batu Caves, Ahmad Zahid delivered the good news that the government would allocate RM2 million to the Sri Subramaniar Swamy Temple to develop a cultural complex for the Indian community.
Thaipusam is observed by Hindus all over the world in the month of ‘Thai’ in the Tamil calendar to commemorate the act of Goddess Parvathi presenting the ‘vel’ (lance} to her son Lord Muruga as an embodiment of her ‘shakti’ or power to vanquish the evil Soorapadman and restore peace and well-being.
During Thaipusam, Hindus fulfill their vows by carrying well-decorated ‘kavadi’ bearing pots of milk as an offering to Lord Muruga.