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Maha Shivaratri celebrated in Mullaitivu and Mannar under Sri Lankan military surveillance

Maha Shivaratri poojas took place in Mullaitivu and Mannar temples amidst the presence of Sri Lankan police, army and special forces this month.

Shivaratri events were carried out with special hygiene practices in line with the island’s coronavirus health guidance.

The festival is one of the most important events in the Saivite and Hindu calendar, which serves to remind those celebrating of overcoming darkness and bringing hope in life and the world.

Mullaitivu

Worshippers attended the Shivaratri festival at the Sri Konamadhu Pillaiyar Temple located at the Kurunegala Hills in Mullaitivu after more than 30 years. 

Special poojas also were also carried out at Mullaitivu’s Neeraviyadi Pillaiyar Temple.

Mannar

On Thursday, thousands of devotees attended the 2021 Maha Shivaratri poojas and events at the historic Mannar Thiruketheeswaram temple amidst the surveillance of the police, army and Special Task Force. 

Various Hindu cultural events also took place at the Thiruketheeswaram Thiruppani Sabha ahead of the Shivaratri events.

However, certain rituals, such as carrying the Teertha (holy water) to and swimming on the Palavi banks were reportedly prohibited for "security reasons".

Several people from Mulliyawalai, Thannirurru and Kumulamunai villages took part in the worship. 

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