Every 12 years, the small island town of Srirangam turns into an epicentre of spirituality with thousands of devotees thronging the place to celebrate the Cauvery Pushkaram.
This is a 12-day-long festival that is believed to have been celebrated by locals for the past 1,000 years to pray for good rains and crops.
This year the crowd is greater because of the Cauvery Maha Pushkaram - a moment that occurs once in 144 years due to rare planetary movement - on 12th Sept 2017 near the Amma Mandapam.
With the festival having its roots in Andhra Pradesh, a major chunk of devotees are from the state.
Among them are the followers of Sri Sri Thridandi Sriman Narayana Ramanuja Chinna jeeyar swamy, who have arrived in large numbers from Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
The word Pushkaram refers to the 'worship of sacred river' and is also known as Pushkarulu in Telugu.
While such festivals are celebrated at shrines along the banks of 12 major rivers in India, ancestor worship, devotional music and cultural programmes are integral part of these events.
The Pushkaram is celebrated every 12 years along the banks of 12 major rivers by rotation, the last being celebrated along the banks of Godavari at Bhardrachalam in Telangana.
Notwithstanding the rotation system, the festival is religiously observed every 12 years along the banks of Cauvery in Srirangam.
This year it is declared as Cauvery Maha Pushkaram as it is the 12th instance on which Jupiter enters.
Various ‘homams’ and ‘yajnas’ by Vedic are conducted during of the 12-day-long festival.
Temple priests say it is believed that whoever takes a holy dip in the Cauvery during this time will be absolved of all sins.
An added attraction of this year's festival is that it coincides with the 1,000th birth anniversary of the Vaishnava ascetic Acharya Sri Ramanuja.