The annual 'Mukkoti' festival of Kumaradhara Teertham will be held on February 22, coinciding with the auspicious 'Magha Pournami', at Tirumala. A special puja will be performed by the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) in the sacred Theertham on the day.
The three crore Theerthas, believed to be present in the Seshachalam ranges, are broadly divided into four categories viz., 'Dharma Rati prada', 'Gnana prada', 'Bhakti Vairagya Prada' and 'Mukti Prada'. The Kumaradhara Theertham falls under the last category and is considered as the first and foremost with its significance explained in Vamana , Varaha , Padma and Markandeya Puranas of Venkatachala Mahatyam .
According to Vamana and Varaha Puranas , the Theertham attained the name after an old man was transformed into a teenager by the Lord Himself moved by his devotion. In Sanskrit, the teenager is referred to as 'Kaumara' or 'Kumaradasa' and hence the name.
The other two Puranas also have interesting stories about the Theertham. The commander-in-chief of the army of deities, Kumaraswamy, younger son of Lord Shiva, killed the demon Tarakasura. To wipe off the sin, Kumaraswamy performed a penance on the advice of his father in Venkatachalam and attained sanctity. Since, Lord Kumaraswamy performed penance in this area, it is called Kumaradhara.
Pournami Garuda Seva: Meanwhile, The monthly 'Pournami Gaurda Seva' will be conducted in the evening of on February 22, between 7 p.m. and 9 p.m.