Onam Pookkalam & Shining Mohiniyattam Girl at Onam Athachamayam 2012 in Tripunithura Kerala
Onam is an ancient festival which still survives in modern times. Kerala's rice harvest festival and the Festival of Rain Flowers, which fall on the Malayalam month of Chingam, celebrates the Asura King Mahabali's annual visit from the Sutala loka.
Onam starts with Atham day which marks the start of festivities at Thrikkakara Temple (considered as the abode of Mahabali). The Onam celebrations across the state, starts off with a grand procession at Thrippunithura near Kochi called Athachamayam.
Elephant processions, folk art presentations, music and dancing make Athachamyam a spectacular event which is now aggressively promoted as a tourist event.
The traditional ritual of laying Pookalam (floral carpet, ( Poo Means flower ) starts on Atham day. The size of pookalam on this day is called Athapoo considerably smaller, and which eventually grows day after day. Only yellow flowers are used on this day and the design stays simple.
Presented here is a school girl doning a traditional mohiniyattam attire, the Kerala classical form of dance, and a boy holding a Pookkalam during athachamayam procession in Tripunithura Kerala.
Read my experience in Tripunithura Athachamayam 2012 here - blog.poonamparihar.com/2012/08/atham-tripunithura-me.html