Sammakka Saralamma Jathara or Medaram Jathara is a tribal festival of honouring the goddesses celebrated in the state of Telangana, India.The Jatra begins at Medaram in Tadvai Mandal in Warangal district. It commemorates the fight of a mother and daughter, Sammakka and Saralamma, with the reigning rulers against an unjust law. It is believed that after Kumbha Mela, the Medaram jathara attracts the largest number of devotees in the country. An estimated 10 million people gathered in 2012It is celebrated in Medaram during the time the goddesses of the tribals is believed to visit them. Medaram is a remote place in the Eturnagaram Wildlife Sanctuary, a part of Dandakaranya.
There are many legends about the miraculous powers of sammakka. According to a tribal story, about 6-7 centuries ago, that is in the 13th century, once a troop from the Koya tribal community was returning from a trip, when they saw a little girl playing with the tigers. The head of the troop saw the girl and inspired by her bravery, he adopted her and named her as Sammakka. Later she married a headman of a neighboring tribal group and had a daughter, Sarakka. Both the mother and daughter protested the Kakatiya kings who forced the tribes to pay taxes. Both the women fought bravely and reportedly lost their lives. The Koya community constructed this temple as a token of gratitude. Annually an event called Sammakka Saralamma jathara is held which is considered as one of the largest tribal festivals of the world.
Sammakka Sarakka Jathara is the time for the largest tribal religious congregation in the world, held every two years (biennually), with approximately ten million people converging on the place, over a period of four days, which is 90km from Warangal city. The Sammakka Sarakka Jatra is a State Festival of Govt. of Telangana. Many tribal Devotees from different states of India (M.P, Chhattisgarh, Orissa, Maharashtra, Karnataka and parts of Jharkhand)reach to the festive place to celebrate the Jathara. People offer bangaram/gold (jaggery) of a quantity equal to their weight to the goddesses and take holy bath in Jampanna Vagu (stream). It is a festival with no vedic or brahmanic influence.
Until 1998, the only way to reach Medaram was by a bullock cart. In 1998 the state government declared the 1000-yr old festival as official and laid down a motorable road. In 2008, nearly 8 million people were estimated to have attended the festival. And in recent times the gatherings in the jathara are roughly near 10 million. This fair is said to be the largest repeating congregation of tribal communities in the world. The traffic jam during the festival sometimes goes as far as 60 km on the Warangal highway. In 2012, approximately 1 crore people would attend the world's largest tribal festival.
Jampanna vagu is a tributary to River Godavari. According to the history, Jampanna is the tribal warrior and the son of Tribal Goddess Sammakka. The Jampanna vagu took his name as he died in a battle fighting against Kakatiyan Army in that stream . The Jampanna vagu is still red in colour marked with the blood of Jampanna (Scientifically the red colour of the water is attributed to the soil composition). Tribal's believe that taking a holy dip in the red water of Jampanna Vagu reminds them the sacrifice of their gods who save them and also induces courage into their souls. There is a bridge constructed on top of Jampanna Vagu, known as Jampanna Vagu bridge.
Maghasudha pournami, the special occasion!
The actual festival begins during the month of Magha, on Sudha Pournami i.e. full moon day in the evening when Sarakka is traditionally brought from Kanneboyinapalle village in the forest, and then placed on an earthen platform which is raised under a tree.
By the sunset of next day, the main goddess Sammakka is then brought from Chilukalagutta. There are two platforms, one for goddess Sammakka and other is for goddess Sarakka. They are in the form of bamboo sticks, which is smeared with vermilion and turmeric. Since times immemorial, there is a huge tree, which stands on Sammakka gadde.
When the priests get the ochre box and other important relics from a hidden forest location, there is a great tumult accompanied frenzied beating of drums, trumpet blowing and yells. It is said believed that during the festival a huge tiger moves around peacefully. The coconuts and jaggery offering becomes piled at the foot of the old trees.
Medaram Jathara 2018 Program Schedule
The largest tribal fair of the nation Sammakka Sarakka Jathara 2018 dates has been declared by the Telangana Government. Sammakka Sarakka Jathara 2018 will be held from 31st January to 3rd February 2018 . Sammakka Sarakka Jathara is largest tribal fair in the world wide.It is celebrated once in two years for 4 days during Magha purnima. Jathara will be celebrated in the heart of the thick forests of Tadwai Mandal Warangal district. Around 90 Lakh people from two Telugu states, Maharashtra, Chattisgarh, Karnataka, Tamilnadu and other places will attends the Jathara.
|01||31 January 2018||Goddess Saralamma Ammavaru will arrive on Gadde from Kannepally village.|
|02||01 February 2018||Goddess Sammakka Ammavaru will arrive on Gadde from Chilakala Gutta.|
|03||02 February 2018||Devotees offer naivedyam or other offerings like Bangaram (bellam – jaggery) Sammakka and Saralamma Darshanam.|
|04||03 February 2018||Last day of Sammkka Sarakka Jathara,Goddess Sammakka and Saralamma will return back in to forest (Sammakka Saralamma Vanapravesham).|
How To Reach
Medaram is located nearly 260 km from Hyderabad and it is well connected by road and rail from some of the major cities of Telangana like Warangal, Bhupalapally, Karimnagar etc.
The village of Medaram is located at a distance of 14 km to the northwest of Tadvai village, and it is accessible by NH 163.
For those travelling from Hyderabad by road, NH 163 via Warangal is an ideal option. There are special buses operated by TSRTC, from MGBS station and Uppal cross roads in Hyderabad.
Kazipet is the nearest railway station to reach Medaram, located about 105 km away. South Central Railway (SCR) is running 16 special trains between Secunderabad-Warangal-Hyderabad, Kazipet-Sirpur Kagazhnagar-Kazipet and Sirpur Kagazhnagar-Khammam- Sirpur Kagazhnagar from January 31st to February 3rd.
The devotees visiting Medaram festival will have a new facility to
travel by air this year. The state government is offering helicopter
service to devotees from Laknavaram lake to Medaram temple. The
devotees can reach the Helipad at Laknavaram by road from Warangal.
After darshan at Medaram, the devotees will be dropped back at
Laknavaram from where they can reach Warangal by road. Booking
facility is available at all the counters of Telangana Tourism.
Helicopter Ride For Medaram Jathara, Jan 29th to Feb 04th 2018