Ekanta Seva is the last seva performed to Lord Venkateswara before closing the temple for that particular day. Bhoga Srinivasa idol is laid on a gold Vuyyala (Swing) in the mukhamantapam using silver chains. Milk, fruits, almonds are offered to the Lord and performed chandanam is placed at the feet of the main deity after removing the kavacham covering the feet. Chandanam is also placed on the chest of Bhoga Srinivasa, Alamelumangai (on the chest of main deity). Since it is believed that Lord Brahma comes to perform prayers to the Lord after the temple doors are closed every night, chandanam, water and puja material is left for his usage. Water filled in silver cups are also kept for being consecrated by Lord Brahma and the same is distributed as ‘thirtha’ (holy/sacred water) to all pilgrims on the next day.
During Ekanta Seva, a descendant of Saint Poet Sri Tallapaka Annamacharya sings lullabies(a gentle song that you sing to help a child to go to sleep) to put the Lord to celestial sleep. This seva is also known as Panupu Seva.
Tarikonda Venkamamba’s harati in a plate inlaid with one of the dasavatarams (10 Avatars of Lord Vishnu) along with pearls bought by Venkamamba’s descendent is waved to the Lord. During the entire ceremony, descendants of Tallapaka poets sing Tallapaka sankirtanam. In the Dhanurmasa (Marga masa), the idol of Lord Krishna is put to sleep in the vuyyala instead of Bhoga Srinivasa.
Significance Ekantha Seva in Tirumala/ Pavalimpu Seva:
This last ritual is in the night. This is called ekantha seva. This is also known as Rathri pooja as it is done in the night. This pavalimpu seva is an arjitha seva. It lasts for 45 minutes. During this ritual the garlands adorning the moolavar are removed. ‘The gaddam bottu i.e. the ‘Sripada renu’ on the chin is removed and fresh one put. The gold kavacha for the feet is also removed. The priest performs Sripada seva. at the feet of Dhruvabera, two full tablets of sandal paste are taken and after covering the bare feet with a vastra, the two tablets are placed on the two feet over the cloth. A tablet is placed on Alamelmanga on Dhruvabera’s chest (Vakshasthala Lakshmi/Dwibhuja Lakshmi-For Details Check Here). In the meantime the sayana mantapa is ready for the deity. A silver cot will be brought in and suspended from silver chains from the roof in the sayana mantapa. The floor will be covered with Rangavalli design with rice powder. A velvet bed is laid on the cot. The sanctum is cleaned as the Kantakabera is removed from the Jeevasthana. Now milk is offered to the Kantakabera in a silver pot.
The 2 queens of Krishnadevaraya (Chinna devi and Tirumala devi) are gifted each a gold cup (374 tulas) for offering milk during this seva. One another large silver plate with cashewnuts, almonds, dried grapes, clarified butter, fruits, sugar candy and tambula (50 betel leaves, nut, coconut gratings, cloves, cardamom and Japatri) is also offered. Then the Kantakabera is laid on the cot with its head to the south, sayana sukta is recited. Half a tablet of chandana is placed on the chest of the sayanabera. Meantime at the Bangaru Vakili, Mukhaveena will be played. Then a descendant of Tallapaka Annamacharya will sing some songs. Aarti is offered to the Kantakabera with Dasavathara aarti plate i.e. each day the aarti plate will have one avatara of the Lord engraved in it. Simultaneously the puja articles will get ready for Brahmaradhana in the night. Another half tablet of chandana paste will also be kept there and 5 vattils (cups) will be filled with water from Akasaganga and other fragrant articles. Then the priest goes to the sanctum to put out all the lights. Previously the Brahma-akhanda lamp was kept lighted as that light lit by the creator while conservating the shrine.It is said that every day this lamp used to consume not less than 17 kg of clarified butter. But nowadays all the lights are put out in order to avoid fire hazard. The Bangaru Vakili is closed and bolted with archakas key followed by Jiyar’s and administrator’s keys. The temple authorities scale the door lock.
On Varalakshmi Vrata day alone after Ekantaseva a few more rituals are observed. Later the archakas go to Potu (kitchen) and Thirumanjanam is done to Potu Thayar. She is adorned with a new vastra and naivedya is offered to her with preparations made out of Bengal gram. With that the curtain is drawn for the day on the daily worship rituals in the temple. Quite often the rush is so much in the temple town that even within 15 minutes of closing the doors and depositing the keys in the matha, steps for opening it for the next day’s suprabhata seva start. The deity is not given the luxury and comfort of a long sleep. He is ever at the beck and call of his sincere devotees. ‘Edukondalavada’, ‘Apadbandhava’, ‘Vaddikasulavada’, ‘Sankataharaka’, ‘Venkataramana’, ‘Narayana’, ‘Govinda’ – the devotees cry and call for his grace.
This exercise is done everyday, either as an arjita seva (paid service with public allowed to view) or in ekanta (without any public presence) based on the pilgrim rush on that day.
The exact date of start of the seva is unknown while records exists of Krishnadeva Raya’s wives – Chinnaji Devi and Tirumala Devi presenting golden cups to offer milk to Lord in 1513 A.D.
During Dhanurmasa, Lord Krishna is put to sleep in this cradle instead of Lord Sri Venkateswara.
After Ekantha Seva Tirumala, the Bangaru Vaakili doors are closed and sealed and the keys are handed over to the Jeeyar. Next morning, the keys are brought by the Jeeyar and in His holy presence, the temple doors are opened.
The priests will then arrange Deepams just in front of Sannidhi Gola Mancham before finally putting the 2 Akanda deepams arranged to see Lord Venkateswara Divya Mangala Swarupam.
A group of people will then have to play a pleasant instrumental music to Mandapam as soon as the priest close Bangalaru Vakili using cotton. Taking part in Ekanta Seva is very exciting especially if it is your first time. However, you will need an Ekantha Seva ticket before gaining access to the venue (Shayana Mandapam).
Ekanta Seva Timings in Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD)/ TTD Ekantha Seva Timings/ శ్రీవారి ఏకాంత సేవ :
The starting time of Ekanta Seva is usually 1:30 A.M. However, there is no specific time for performing Ekentha Seva since it can take place at any time as from 10:30 P.M and 12:00 Midnight. Priests tend to stick with this timing if they are to perform Seva in the best possible way.
Ekantha Seva is a very important ritual and hence devotees should try their best to book the tickets before they run out.
How to Book Tirumala Ekantha Seva Tickets/ How can I book Ekantha Seva?:
Go and Open link https://tirupatibalaji.ap.gov.in/ as the link. This link will redirect you to the homepage of TTD website from where you can log into your account using the login details i.e. Username and Password. Once in the site, you will have to click on ‘Seva’ option before finally choosing the ‘type of Seva’ that you want to book a ticket. In this scenario, you will have to select Ekantha Seva.
Choose the Seva date when you want to attend the Seva. After select the ‘How many tickets’ you want to book for this seva. Then Enter the Pilgrim details with Aadhaar Card Number. Click on ‘Continue’ button. Finally enter the captcha. The good thing about booking Ekanta Seva TTD ticket online is that you will have to rely on online payment methods like Net Banking, Credit Card or Debit Card.This action ensures that you do not have to move around with cash whenever you want an Ekantha Seva ticket. Moreover, you will reduce the risk of losing your money when you decide to use online payment methods.
Dress Code For Ekantha Seva in TTD:
A Male devotee can wear dhoti or lungi with uttareeyam or kurta-pyjama.
A Woman devotee can wear saree or a chudidar with chunni.
TTD Ekantha Seva Ticket Price:
cost of this seva is 200rs/ person
Number of People Allowed and Prasadam,Time Duration of TTD Ekantha Seva:
Each ticket allows entry for one person and 2 small laddus are awarded as prasadam along with the mixture of milk, almonds from the seva. The duration of the seva is 30 mins