8,000 join street procession for Hindu festival

About 8,000 Hindu devotees walked nearly 2km yesterday for the annual Panguni Uthiram festival, held in honour of the Hindu god Murugan. The procession from Canberra Link to the Holy Tree Sri Balasubramaniar Temple in Yishun included 84 bearers of ch
PHOTO: TAMIL MURASU

About 8,000 Hindu devotees walked nearly 2km yesterday for the annual Panguni Uthiram festival, held in honour of the Hindu god Murugan. The procession from Canberra Link to the Holy Tree Sri Balasubramaniar Temple in Yishun included 84 bearers of chariot and alagu kavadis - offerings borne by metal spikes and hooks in the carrier's flesh - while another 1,252 devotees carried paal kavadi and paal kudam (milk pots) on their shoulders and heads. This year's festival fell on the same day as the one-year anniversary of Mr Lee Kuan Yew's death. Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam, who was there, said the coincidence was a reminder of his legacy of a "multi-religious, multiracial environment".

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 24, 2016, with the headline '8,000 join street procession for Hindu festival'. Print Edition | Subscribe