Chelairu Khandige Dharmarasu Shri Ullaya Daivasthana is a prominent place which holds a long term history of more than 1200 years. Daiva worshipped here is an Ullaya Daiva.
Renowned by the popular saying “Yermal Jappu, Kandevu Adepu”, (meaning Yermal Festival is the first and Kandevu Festival is the last), Kandevu Daivasthana is the only place having the Muga (Face representing Daiva) for Ullaya Daiva.
Before entering Khandige, Ullaya Daiva comes to Sasihithlu and meet the Rajan Daiva Saranthaya. It is believed that people of MithraPatna who belong to Mogaveera Community were on their daily routine of fishing they came across Ullaya daiva along with Aiyer Sathyolu (Five Spirits) who appeared to be dressed like a Brahmin. When Ullaya daiva asks fisherman’s about the good place to stay (Sampulla Jaage – meaning cool place to stay) in the surroundings, they point towards Kandevu Boodu (Khandige Beedu) hence they resided here. Because of this reason behind Mogaveera Community of Mithrpatna has a prominent role during the Annual Festival of Khandige, starting from setting up the Wooden Pole for hoisting the Garuda till the end of Nemotsava. [Now there is a permanent Dhwaja Sthamba so this act is not performed]. As an act of re-creating the history a tradition of fishing is performed by Mogaveera people before Ullaya Nemotsava begins. However, the fish caught will not be offered to Ullaya Daiva (no non vegetarian dishes are offered to god). The fishes caught will be taken home by villagers, since they expect guests, relatives and friends to visit home during the festival celebration. Its believed that the fish caught during this event is more tastier than that once caught on regular days. Since Ullaya is a Shaiva Shakthi (Lord Shiva’s form), no Madhu-Mamsa (Nonveg or Drinks) is offered to Ullaya and Parivara daivas.
Khandige Jaathre (known as Kandevudayana in Tulu) begins on Sankrathi (transitioning from Paggu to Besa month of Tulu). Priest and villagers gather together and offer prayer to Ullaya and begin the tredition of catching fish. On the same night ‘Thambila’ seva is offered to Brahma under the Peeple tree where seven Siris(women who are assumed to be involved in spiritual activity ) are made to sit on coconut leaf mat. Kumara and seven siris are worshipped and with their words, paraphernalia of Ullaya and Aiyer Sathyolu (5 spirits – Kantheri Jumadi, Sarala Jumadi, Kodamanithaya, Jarandaya, Banta) is taken to Kandevu Boodu. After hoisting the flag – Garuda, Ullaya Daiva’s Kanchi-Minchida Nema begins at around 5 a.m. Unlike other Daivas of Tulunadu, Ullaya Daiva Nema will finish within a short duration by holding Pancha Jeetige. After that Ishtha Devathe, Babbarya and Nandi Gona Nemotsava will start. Maisandaya after receiving Horse grains offering (Kudu) infront of Brahmasthana, will meet Kumara and Seven siri’s under the Peeple tree.
Next day the ritual start’s in the morning. Ullaya and and Aiyer Sathyolu (5 spirits – Kantheri Jumadi, Sarala Jumadi, Kodamanithaya, Jarandaya, Banta) will come in Joga. Evening, under the same Peeple tree, Nemotsava will take place for both Kodamanithaya and Jarandaya Daiva.
The Muga of Ullaya in Khandige came along with Ullaya Daiva while entering Khandige. The metal of this Muga is not yet known and the color keeps changing. Sometimes it appears to be an iron piece and other it shines like Gold. Since it’s believed to enter Khandige along with Daiva, the Muga is not altered yet kept as it is.
Its believed Bappanadu Jaathre, Arasu Kambla and Khandige Fishing were the highest crowd gathering events of coastal area since ancient times.