Thaipusam : Family support carries him through

Report and pictures by: 
Latashni Gobi Nathan

Mr Kanan Packrisamy, 42, has been carrying the kavadi at the annual Thaipusam festival for about 15 years.
In previous years, he carried a 35kg kavadi; but this year, Mr Kanan added an additional segment to his kavadi, which then brought the weight to 50kg.
The extra load was tough, he said, after walking about 4.5km from Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple at Serangoon Road to Sri Thendayuthapani Temple at Tank Road with the weight of the kavadi bearing down hard on his body.
Mr Kanan said: “I think I underestimated the weight, but I can’t and won’t go back to the old kavadi. It’s something that I have to get better at. I’m sure all my fellow kavadi carriers will agree.”
The chief operating officer of sports marketing firm, The Red Card, said he could not have completed the 2½-hour journey without the encouragement of family members who were beside him throughout the procession. His wife, parents, siblings and cousins lent him their support.
And the crowd of 20 people around Mr Kanan continuously played songs, encouraged him and even stopped his four-tier kavadi from tipping over when the wind blew too strongly.
The report related to these pictures was first published in The New Paper on Jan 20, 2014.