CHANTS of “Ponggalo Ponggal” resounded through the halls of the Sri Maha Mariamman Temple Hall in Buntong as milk from two brightly decorated earthen pots boiled over.
The overflowing of the milk was also accompanied by nadaswaram music played by the musicians during the celebration.
The milk that overflowed from the pots signified prosperity, abundance, peace and happiness to all devotees and that it would be a year of blessings and good tidings.
Ipoh Hindu Devasthana Paripalana Sabah secretary M. Vivekananda said the first day of the celebration, Surya Ponggal, would include prayers offered to Lord Muruga and Lord Surya Bhagwan.
“The second day, devotees will give thanks to cows and bulls during the ‘Mattu Ponggal’. On this day, the animals will be given a bath, decorated and fed with the milk from the ponggal pots,” he said, adding that the temple would observe three days of celebrations.
“The third day is the “Kanni Ponggal”, when young unmarried girls come out to pray that they would find a good husband,” he added.
Vivekananda said prayers would be held in the morning and evening at the temple.
“We will also hold the ‘Bogi” ritual, where devotees discard their unwanted items.
“This symbolises the discarding of bad vibes and to welcome new and good tidings,” he said.
“We will also feed the cooked ponggal to our devotees so they can have sweet and good luck all year long,” he added.
Over at the Chennai Silk Palace, along Jalan Sultan Iskandar, employees at the shop also held a simple celebration by cooking the ponggal.
Owner B. Rajes Kanna, 32, said it was the third time they were celebrating the harvest festival.
“As is our tradition, we want to give thanks to the sun and we hope for a bountiful year,” he said.
Shop worker T. Dineswary, 21, also hoped for a good year ahead for her friends and family members.
When asked if she hoped to find a good husband this year, Dineswary said: “I am still too young to get married. Maybe I will pray for this in the future.”