Third International Conference Seminar on Murukan-Skanda, Kuala Lumpur November 2-5, 2003
Nightly Cultural Performances at Batu Caves during four-day Conference
from: The Star (Kuala Lumpur) of Thursday, October 23, 2003
Devotees of Lord Muruga can look forward to nightly cultural performances and prayer sessions during the Third International Arulmigu Murukan Conference 2003 to be held from November 2 to 5 at the Śrī Subramaniyar Temple in Batu Caves.
Organising committee chairman Thiru Nadarajah said the nightly performances would be free of charge and would feature, among others, famed Bharata Natyam dancer Malati Agniswaran from India and local talents such as Bharata Kshetra's Dance Centre and Kirubakaran's choir group.
A special attraction will be performances by Kalaimamani Kovai Kamala and her troupe, who will be specially flown in from Chennai, India.
Speaking at a press conference recently, Thiru said prayer sessions called 1008 kalasa abhisegam with maha vellvi would be held from Oct 31 to Nov 2 in conjunction with the conference.
"This will be followed by a procession of 1008 devotees who will walk up the 272 steps with the holy kalasam to the Cave Temple to perform the Maha Abhisegam for Lord Muruga, as well as a special pooja on the morning of November 2."
Thiru said 10,000 devotees of Lord Muruga are expected to attend the conference opening ceremony by MIC president and Works Minister Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu.
"We appeal to all Lord Muruga devotees to attend the opening ceremony, cultural night performances and the 1008 Kalasa Pooja," said Thiru.
However, the academic part of the conference, which comprises the presentation of research papers, lectures and forums, will only be opened to registered delegates.
Thiru said more than 200 foreign delegates from 20 countries including India, Britain, Germany and the United States would be attending the conference together with 250 local delegates.
A total of 96 research papers will be presented by leading international academicians. Their research topics will be focused on the worship of Lord Muruga.
Speakers will include prominent scholars such as Kumari Ananthan and John Samuel from India, Patrick Harrigan from Sri Lanka and Alexander Dubiansky from Russia.
Also present at the press conference were Dr. A. Kandiah, a conference delegate from Australia, and members of the organising committee such as Dr N. S. Rajendran, Datuk A. Vaithilingam, Gnanasiriar Sankaradasar Sathaya and Swami Bala Yogi from the Thiru Peedam Temple in Petaling Jaya.
The first such international conference was held in Chennai in 1998 followed by a second conference in Mauritius in 2001.
The main objectives of the conference include emphasising the importance of Lord Muruga worship in Hinduism, especially amongst the younger generation and promoting research on Lord Muruga worship.
This year's conference is jointly organised by local temples and leading Hindu organisations in collaboration with the International Centre for the Study of Murukan-Skanda and Universiti Malaya's Department of Indian Studies.
Registration to attend the academic part of the conference is open to Malaysians until October 30. The fee for local delegates or observers is RM200 while students will be charged RM150. An additional RM100 is charged for those who desire accommodation. For details, call the secretariat at 03-6184 1544, 012-9257 023 (Paramasivam) or 012-2798 444 (Kubiran).
For more information contact:
November 2003 Murukan Conference Newsletter special issue