Chennai: The birth anniversary of Raja Raja Cholan, which is celebrated as Sadhaya Vizha in Thanjavur, will also be observed this year at Udayalur, which is said to be the place of death of the Tamil emperor.
Tamil Ezhuchi Peravai secretary P Iraiarasan told News Today the event will be held in the town on 20 October from 9 am to 6 pm to create more awareness among the people about the resting place of the great king.
“There are several debates over it. One theory is that the Kailasanathar Temple at Udayalur is the pallippadai (final resting place) of the emperor. However, there are others who claim that the place where a Lingam is found along with an inscription in the same town is the burial site of Raja Raja Cholan. But one thing sure, it was in Udayalur that the emperor breathed his last,” he said.
He further said they want to celebrate the day in a grand manner making more people aware of the historical event and place.
“There is enough proof that this place was once a fort as there are close to four feet walls that run along the fields in the village. This should have been one of the forts of the king,” he added.
Talking about the events that will be held during the Sadhaya Vizha, he said, “Thevaram will be recited, following which various traditional musical instruments will be played. There will also be a debate about Raja Raja Cholan and his history. The event was celebrated at Udayalur in a small way all these years but with the cooperation of several groups such as Tamil Ezhuchi Peravai, Cholamandalam Varalatru Thedal Kuzhu, Ponniyin Selvan Varalatru Peravai, Ponniyin Selvan Padakadhai Veliyeetagam, Raja Raja Cholan Varalatru Aaivu Maiam, Udayalur and Pampa Padayur, we will have a grand celebration this year. The people here are very supportive and, in fact, they have said they will sponsor the annadhanam the budget for which comes to around Rs 3 lakh,” he smiled.
A continuation of the event will be held in Chennai 27 October when only the debate will be conducted.
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WHAT IS PALLIPADAI?
Pallippadai means a Shiva temple constructed on the cemetery of a king. It is the Tamil name for sepulchral shrine. The habit was common during later Chola period.
Born as Arulmozhivarman, the second son of Parantaka Cholan II and Vanavan Mahadevi, Raja Raja Cholan, is considered an unequalled monarch who ruled the entire south India. After the death of his brother and crown prince Aditya Karikalan, there was political instability in the country. To put an end to this, Raja Rajan asked his uncle to take over the thrown and ascended it only after his demise 15 years later. Raja Raja’s period was considered the golden age of the Cholas. He is noted for promoting art, and the Brihadeeswara Temple in Thanjavur is a testimony to his love for art and spirituality.