Around 50000 devotees had the Darshan of Lord Sri Ayyappan Swamy on a single day yesterday (Thursday, 24th November) at the Sabarimalai Lord Sri Ayyappan Temple in the State of Kerala!
As per the situation at 10.00 AM today (Friday, 25th November), information is gathered that around 29000 devotees had Darshan by this time!
The Kerala State Dewaswom Board Minister K. Radhakrishnan informed that during the first 6 days since the temple corridors of Lord Sri Ayyappan temple were opened, 2.61 Lakh devotees had Darshan of Lord Sri Ayyappan!
In this situation, the number of devotees vesting Sabarimalai temple has been increasing every passing day!! As per this, when there was a teeming crowd of devotees yesterday (Thursday, 24th November), information is gathered that 50000 devotees had Darshan of Lord Sri Ayyappan!
Further, as it is the onset of the Tamil/Kerala calendar month of Karthigai, it is strongly expected the number of devotees visiting Sabarimalai Lord Sri Ayyappan temple will increase every passing day!!
On 17th November which was the 1st day of the Tamil Calendar month of Karthigai, 47947 devotees had Darshan of Lord Sri Ayyappan. During the first 5 days of the Tamil Calendar month of Karthigai, 261874 devotees visited for the Darshan of Lord Sri Ayyappan.
As more devotees are expected to visit during the month of Karthigai, it is expected that the number of devotees will keep increasing every passing day!!
Change in Darshan Timings
With the above-mentioned striking increase in the number of devotees visiting Sabarimalai for the Darshan of Lord Sri Ayyappan, especially during the Makara Vilakku Poojai, the temple administration (Dewaswom Board) has changed the timings for Darshan of Lord Sri Ayyappan.
Already existing Darshan times are from 3.00 AM until 1.00 PM in the forenoon session and from 4.00 PM to 12.00 midnight in the afternoon session. As the number of devotees visiting has increased, an official of the temple administration informed that the Darshan in the afternoon session will commence by 3.00 PM INSTEAD OF 4.00 PM THUS INCREASING THE HOURS OF Darshan!
For the benefit of the visiting devotees to Sabarimalai Lord Sri Ayyappan temple, a special weekly train is to be operated from Hyderabad to Kollam from 5th December until 9th January!
In a notification released by the Southern Railway regarding this, it is mentioned:
"A weekly Special train (07053) will be operated from Hyderabad to Kollam on Mondays from 5th December until 9th January. This train will start from Hyderabad on Mondays at 3.50 PM and will reach Kollam the next day (Tuesday) night at 11.50 PM.
On the return trip, the train (07054) will start from Kollam every Wednesday from 7th December until 11th January at 2.30 Am from Kollam and will reach Hyderabad on Thursday at 10.00 AM. This train will operate via Katpadi, Jolarpettai, Salem, Erode, Tirupur, and Coimbatore.
Special Information Center at Kaniyakkavilai
Speciaial information is set up au Kaniyakkavilai by the Religious Endowment Board to help the visiting Tamil Devotees.
Note that the visiting devotees from Tamil Nadu MUST NOT CARRY ITEMS INCLUDING POOJA ITEMS IN PLASTIC BAGS. EVEN PLASTIC WATER BOTTLES ARE NOT Allowed!! This restriction has been imposed with due consideration to keep the purity of the Pampai River.
Further, inflammable items such as gas cylinders also are not permitted to carry! There are similar other restrictions imposed as well! This Information Centre will operate from 20th January 2023.
Special trains via Pothanur
On the occasion of the festive season at Sabarimalai, information is given on behalf of the Indian Railways that special trains will be operated on the Belgaum-Kollam route!
With the objective to avoid devotee crowd congestion on the occasion of festivals at Sabarimalai, a special train is operated from Belgaum, Karnataka State to Kollam, Kerala State.
As per this, the train (07357) starting from Belgaum on 20th November (Sunday) at 11.30 AM will reach Kollam the next day (Monday) at 3.15 PM.
The train starting from Kollam (07358) on 21st November at 5.10 PM will reach Belgaum the next day at 11.00 PM.
The train starting from Belgaum on Sundays from 4th December until 15th January 2023 (07361) at 11.30 AM will reach Kollam the next day at 3.15 PM.
The train starting on 5th December on Mondays from Kollam until 16th January 2023 at 5.10 PM (07362) will reach Kollam the next day at 11.00 PM.
Hubli-Kollam Special Train
The train starting on 27th November from Karnataka, Hubli at 2.40 PM (0735) will reach Kollam the next day at 3.15 PM. The special train (07360) from Kollam on 28th November at 5.10 PM will reach Hubli the next day at 8.00 PM
These trains will operate via Kayankulam, Mavelikkara, Chenganur, Thiruvalla, Senganachery, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Aluva, Trichur, Palakkadu, Pothanur, Tirupur, Erode, and Salem and stop at these stations!