The historic Sri Sitaramachandra Swamy temple in Bhadrachalam will soon get a new ‘prachara ratham’ (motorised chariot) to propagate its glorious history and architectural grandeur.
The new prachara ratham is being presently assembled at a workshop in Hyderabad at an estimated cost of ₹35 lakh, sources said.
Bus being converted
A bus is being converted into a motorised chariot to resemble the renowned Bhadradri temple. In the front, it will have an intricately carved sculpture of illustrious saint composer Bhakta Ramadasu (Kancharla Gopanna), the then local Tahsildar, who built the temple dedicated to Lord Rama in the 17th century.
The front portion will depict an intricate art work of ‘gopuram’ while the rear side will resemble a kalyana mandapam-like structure, temple sources said.
It will have a separate enclosure to carry the processional idols of Lord Rama, the presiding deity of the historic Bhadradri temple, and his consort Sita. It will be deployed to Agency areas and elsewhere in the district to propagate the history of the famous shrine and its traditions including major annual religious events associated with Sitarama Navami, Mukkoti (Vaikunta) Ekadasi and Pokala Dammakka Utsavam.
Induction next month
Temple authorities are planning to induct the new prachara ratham in the service of the temple deity during the ensuing Srirama Navami Tiru Kalyana Brahmotsavam celebrations slated to begin on March 25. It is scheduled to be held in the temple town on the occasion of Srirama Navami festival on April 2.
Old ratham defunct
The move to make the new prachara ratham was necessitated as the old one has remained ‘defunct’ ever since it met with a road accident in an interior tribal area of Bhadrachalam Agency, resulting in the death of its driver in July 2014.