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PATHANAMTHITTA: Veteran trade union leader M. Sukumara Pillai has called upon the Cultural Affairs Department to promote the century-old rustic fair, Vrischika Vanibhom, at Thelliyoor near Thiruvalla.
In a letter to V. Venu, Secretary, Cultural Affairs Department, Mr. Pillai said the government should accord due recognition to rustic fairs like Thelliyoor Vrischika Vanibhom that had been a major annual attraction in Central Travancore.
He said artisans, fisher folk and those running cottage industry units in different parts of the State used to take part in the fair that begins on the first day in the Malayalam month of Vrischikom. People from different walks of life in Central Travancore used to throng Thelliyoor to attend the fair every year, he said.
In the pre-Temple Entry Proclamation days, devotees belonging to various sections of society used to bring their agriculture produce and other things as offerings to the presiding deity at the Thelliyoorkavu Bhagavathy temple on the first day of Vrischikom.
The custom was to bring the articles to the outer courtyard of the temple as temple entry was permitted only to the upper class in those days. Later the custom has developed into an annual fair based on the barter system.
Mr. Pillai, who is also the former chairman of Kerafed, said steps should be taken to open stalls of government institutions such as Kerafed, Khadi Board, Coirfed, etc., at the fair.
Now, the fair is being organised by Sree Rama Ashram Charitable Trust at Thelliyoor.
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