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Hindu devotees gather for firewalking ceremony

Felix Chaudhary
Tuesday, June 24, 2014

ABOUT 2300 Hindu devotees gathered at the Lovu Sangam Temple on the outskirts of Lautoka early on Sunday morning for the annual firewalking ceremony.

Temple committee president Daniel Raju said preparations for the event began with the procession of a statue of the goddess Mariamman to devotees' homes in the five days leading up to the firewalking ceremony.

Mariamman means Mother Mari in Tamil.

The deity is revered as the goddess of rain and is closely associated with the goddess of time, change and destruction, Kali.

"We held a procession with her statue from Drasa to Naikabula and that is why it takes five days of preparation before we hold the firewalking ceremony in the early morning of the prescribed day," he said.

"The youngest person who walked across the hot coals was four years old and the eldest was 92-year-old Permal Poojari."

Mr Raju said the temple had been holding firewalking rituals since 1920 and 32 people participated in the firewalking ceremony this year.

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