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Articles to be filled in the two compartment bag to be carried on head by the Sabarimala pilgrims


Ayyappa Devotees visiting the Sabarimala temple have to carry a specially designed bag with two compartments(Irumudikettu). The ceremonial filling of the bag is referred as Kettunira or Palli Kettu. The front compartment of the bag is to keep articles meant for rituals and offerings to be made for the deities at Sabarimala. The other compartment is meant for holding personal belongings of the devotee.
But nowadays both the compartments are used for filling articles meant for rituals.
Holy articles used to carry in the front compartment
A coconut filled with Ghee, two small coconuts, Arecanut, Betel leaf, Coins, Turmeric Powder, Sandal, Sacred Ash, Rose Water, dried rice, 9 types of grains, Beaten-rice(Avil),Puffed rice(Malar), Jaggery or Small banana, Sugar-Candy, incense sticks, Camphor, Pepper, Small bottle of honey (optional), Dry grape (optional)
The materials used to fill in the other compartment of the bag are rice and other articles required during the journey.
Both compartments of the bag must have enough space to hold these items. The ceremony of filling the compartments(Kettunira) is done on the day of the pilgrimage. It is generally conducted either in one’s own home or at a nearby temple.
Ghee filled coconut is for anointing the idol of Swami Aiyyappan.
Sacred ash is for spraying in the open space in front of the sanctum sanctorium.
Turmeric power is to anoint over the Serpent idols in Sabarimala.
Saffron powder and nine types of grains are for the idols representing the nine planets.
Saffron powder and turmeric powder are also required at Malikappuram temple.
Pepper is used for presenting at Vavar Swami shrine.
Fresh devotees have to roll coconut while encircling the Malikappuram temple shrine. Offerings can also be performed for other Swami Aiyyappa shrines in Sabarimala. Rose water can be used for spraying other devotees. Ghee removed coconut can be put in the sacred fireplace. Certain people used to take half of this coconut to their home.


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Video on Sabarimala Kettunira