Brief History Of Sree Ayyappa Devasthanam

The Ayyappa Bhaktha Samithi, Lalbazar came into being in early 1963 under the presidentship of late Sri K Kochaiyappan with few ardent devotees of Lord Ayyappa as its members. The aim of this Samithi was to conduct pooja during the Mandalakalam and thus provide an opportunity to the devotees of cantonment area and nearby places including the devotees of Defence Establishment/Units to worship Lord Ayyappa. The initial venue for the pooja was erstwhile Doddi village (now Subhash Nagar). This pooja site was subsequently shifted to various places such as premises of Lalbazar Mahankali Temple, MCEME Hokey Ground, Kendriya Vidyalaya Picket and 91 Meadows Barracks Lalbazar during the period from 1965 to 1988 due to obvious reasons. The registration of the Samithi was done in 1983.

Because of the frequent changes in the venue, the members of the Samithi as well as the devotees suffered lot of inconvenience and therefore, it was decided to purchase a piece of land for the construction of a Bhajana Mandiram. With the unstinted support of members and whole-hearted cooperation of devotees/philanthropists, a piece of land near Indian Airlines Colony was acquired in 1986 for the purpose.

When it was planned to construct the Bhajana Mandiram in the land purchased, Mr. Thirumal Rao & Brothers, an ardent devotee from Alwal, came forward to offer the land where the Devasthanam is now situated. This location was considered ideal for the Ayyappa Devasthanam because of its ambience and holiness of the premises comprising of Nagadevata Temple, Guruvayoorappan Temple, Church and the Mosque at the hill top. The Bhajana Mandiram was built at this location by disposing off the piece of land already acquired. It was inaugurated by Lt Gen (Retd) YV Radhakrishna, AVSM, the then Commandant MCEME, on 16 Nov 1989. Initially there was no deity and only the Mandalakala Pooja was performed in this Bhajana Mandiram.

Considering the compelling demand of the devotees, it was decided by the Samithi to install the Idols of Lord Ayyappa, Ganesh & Murugan and perform poojas on day- to-day basis in the traditional way. As a result of the hard work put in by the members and with the cooperation of devotees/well wishers, the Samithi could restructure the Bhajana Mandiram into a Devasthanam. It was a matter of pride for the Samithi that the consecration ceremony of the three Idols was performed by the Traditional Chief Priest of Shabarimala, Brahmasri Kantaru Mohanaru Thantri on 31 Jan 1994.

The Samithi could add on to another achievement by constructing the Sree Dharma Sastha Bhojanalayam with the help of donations received from members, devotees/ philanthropists and thereby fulfill the long cherished desire of everyone. The samarpanam of the Bhojanalayam was done on 16 Nov 2009.

The activities of the Devasthanam are vested with the Managing Committee elected from within the members of the Samithi once in two years.