December 23, 2016
Lack of parking space at Marudhamalai, one of the most famous temples in Coimbatore, is worrying devotees as the Ghat road leading to the temple atop the hills is invariably clogged by vehicles during special days.
Traffic on the less-than-two-km narrow road from the foothills comes to a standstill on important pooja days, including Thai Poosam and Sashti, when more devotees throng the temple.
“Relatives who come to the temple to attend weddings during muhurtham days face more trouble as the number of vehicles is more than usual on those days,” said K Rajesh, a devotee. He further added that in some cases people have not managed to reach the temple in time because of the traffic jam on the way.
P Aravind, another devotee, alleged that the allowing of more vehicles by the contractor was a major reason for the problem.
The parking lot near the temple can hold up to 50 four-wheelers and 150 two-wheelers at a time. In addition to these vehicles, the temple’s bus also makes constant trips up and down. When these numbers are reached, manoeuvring becomes tough for the parked vehicles and it also becomes a hassle for vehicles coming up to the temple. Sometimes vehicles are forced to stay for an hour in the same spot during traffic.
“The contractors are well aware that the parking lot cannot hold above the stipulated number of vehicles. Yet, they keep allowing more vehicles inside, which adds to the problem,” said M Prabhu, another devotee.
Reacting to the issue, a senior official from the Tamil Nadu Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Board said the issue occurred only on special days and that the board was working on ways to solve it.
“We cannot block the vehicles going towards the temple. We will soon create an action plan,” the official added.