Chennai, Apr20(tamilnaducentral): Actor Jayaram is accused of having violated the norms and practices followed in Sabarimala. At first, he was accused of having turned a blind eye to the presence of a young woman at the sanctum sanctorum of Sabarimala.Now he has played a musical instrument in the temple near the sanctum sanctorum and violated the age hold practices is the allegation.
As per the existing norms, only women who are in menopause or in pre-puberty stage can visit the holy hill shrine. The actor who is popular in Tamil and Malayalam is a trained Chenda player. Chenda is a cylindrical wooden drum.The Chenda is suspended from the drummer’s neck so that it hangs vertically. Though both sides can be used for playing, only one is actually beaten. Using two sticks, the drummer strikes the upper parchment (source wikipedia.org).
Jayaram has given many public performances in temple festivals of Kerala. The Chenda is used in coastal Karnataka and in Tamil Nadu.
Jayaram has played the Idakka, a music instrument at Sopana Sangeetham performance in Sabarimala. A photo that went viral showed the actor playing the Idakka at the hill shrine and the young women enjoying it.
Prakash Payambalkattu, a noted Idakka player and also a music teacher posted on FB saying that as per temple norms all over the State, only Marar and Poduval caste members can play musical instruments in temples. Just because Jayaram is an actor, the temple authorities have allowed him to break this tradition. Can celebrity get away with anything? he asked. Jayaram is a Brahmin. The post said that the Devaswom Board had appointed a Marar for this job.
Idakka is the most divine among the mangala vadyas (auspicious instruments). It has the shape of “kadumthudi”, the musical instrument played by Lord Shiva. Idakka is not placed on the floor and is hung near the sanctum sanctorum of the temple when not in use.
It is believed that the instrument represents the Vedas and arts. The four sticks fixed between the strings and the trunk represent the four Vedas. The 64 strings represent the traditional 64 kinds of arts and the six holes, the six sastras. Idakka is mostly used as an accompaniment for Sopana Sangeetham (source: keralaculture.org).
This comes after the photo of the young women standing at the sanctum sanctorum watching Jayaram playing the Idakka did rounds. The actor has yet to react to this FB post. A day later the FB post was deleted for reasons not known. A case is going on in SC over why women should not be allowed to visit the hill shrine.
(Jayaram- Jeyam Ravi photo courtesy: Mathrubhumi News)