Thai Pusam, probably the biggest religious congregation in Malaysia, attained yet another status of National Festival. Published in AndhraNews.net:
The Malaysian Government has been urged to recognize Thaipusam as a national festival and to make it a public holiday in the peninsula. Thaipusam is a Hindu festival celebrated mostly by the Malay Tamil community on the full moon in the Tamil month of Thai (January – February). Thaipusam 2011 date is 20 January 2011.
Sri Maha Mariamman Devastha-nam chairman R. Nadarajah said that so far, Selangor, Perak, Penang, Kuala Lumpur, Johor and Negri Sembilan enjoy a holiday for Thaipusam. He urged other states to be given a similar holiday due to the large number of Hindu devotees and foreign tourists who visited temples, especially those located in the Batu Caves.
Nadarajah further said that the setting up of a cable car system from the base of the caves to the top of the temple has been approved, and it could be operational by 2012. The temple at Batu Caves often attracts over one million devotees and tens of thousands of tourists. The procession to the caves starts at the Sri Mariamman Temple and proceeds to the caves, an 8-hour journey culminating in a flight of 272 steps to the top.