Bonalu Ghatam | Ghatam Procession in Bonalu Festival

‘Ghatam Ooregimpu’ (Procession of Divine Pot, decorated in the form of Mother Goddess) is the popular ritual during Bonalu Festival in Telangana, mostly in Hyderabad and Secunderabad.

Ghatam is a copper pot, decked in the form of Mata. The Ghatam is carried by a priest, who wears a traditional Dhoti and body with smeared in turmeric . The Ghatam is taken into procession from first day of the festival till last day, when it is immersed in water . The Ghatam in usually accompanied by drums.

Ghatam is followed after Rangam. The festival concludes with immersion of Ghatam. The ghatam of Haribowli’s Akkanna Madanna Temple leads the procession, placed atop an elephant and accompanied by mounted horses and models depicting Akkanna and Madanna. It ends in the evening with a glittering procession and display followed by immersion of ghatams at Nayapul.

Bonalu at Golconda Jagadamba Temple

Secunderabad Bonalu at Ujjaini Mahankali Temple

Laldarwaza Bonalu

Moosapet Chittaramma Temple Bonalu

Balkampet Yellamma Temple Bonalu

Katta Maisamma Temple Bonalu

A carnival-like atmosphere, where thousands of people wait along the main streets of Laldarwaza to Nayapul and watch the exquisitely and elaborately decorated Ghatams. Young men dance in a unique style to the drum beats and folk songs alongside Pothuraju, dress-up in various mythological roles.

The Ghatams of the Secunderabad City (Lashkar)include Ujjaini Mahakali & Mahadevi Pochamma at Karbala Maidan, Dokkalamma at Himam Bavi, Muthyalamma at Kalasiguda, Nallagutta, Pan Bazar, Chilkalguda, Uppara Basthi, Kummariguda, Regimental Bazar and Bhoiguda, etc.

There are areas in Secunderabad that existed from during the British era, Areas in Secunderbad cantonment also have their own dates for celebrating bonalu in their villages like Mudfort, Gunrock, Sikh Village ( which are now areas in the cantonment ). They celebrate ghatam procession just for one day or two days or so depending on their age old traditions. Thiru thulkanthamman Temple in Old Mudfort has been doing ghatam since for about 100 years.

The Ghatams of the Old city procession include the Mahankali temples in Haribowli Akkanna-Madanna, Laldarwaza, Uppuguda, Miralam Mandi and Kasaratta, the Jagadamba temple of Sultanshahi, Bangaru Mysamma temple of Shalibanda, Alijah Kotla and Gowlipura, and Sultanshahi, Darbar Mysamma of Aliabad, Mysamma Temple of Boggulkunta (FGP) and Mutyalamma temple of Chandulal Bela.

Many new areas have been added to the list of Bonalu Festival in Hyderabad and Secunderabad twin cities since the city has grown tremendously in couple of decades. Uppal, LB Nagar, Nagole, Hayathnagar, Vanasthalipuram, Alwal, Neredmet, Sainikpuri, Chinthal, etc have also become the part of Bonalu festival of twin cities.

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