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Chintadripet Artisans Who Make the Colorful Umbrellas Used During Hindu Temple Festivals

Colorful umbrellas are an indispensable part of Hindu Temple festivals in South India. The famous Navratri Brahmotsavam held at Tirupati is also noted for the colourful and elegant umbrellas or kudaigal. These umbrellas are created by based at Chintadripet near Chennai. Like all traditional temple arts, this unique art is also struggling. 
Deccan Chronicle reports 
Only about ten to twelve families of artisans based at Chintadripet here are involved in making the umbrellas and have been keeping alive the tradition as the youngsters are no longer attracted to it. 

The hand-made umbrellas — excellent pieces of art, are made ahead of the auspicious Tamil month of Purattasi (September-October). This time 13 umbrellas of varying sizes will be sent to Tirupati in a grand procession. The handle, ranging from 7 to 12 feet is made of teak wood, the collapsible parts with cane and the silk-lace work lends charm to the umbrella cover. 
“It will take two days to make a small umbrella of seven feet high. Usually, we begin the work after getting orders,” says Kumar, a hereditary artisan. “Only about ten persons are involved in making the umbrellas – a tradition passed down to us by our grandfathers,” he adds. These umbrellas are not made by anyone outside their families, Kumar claims. 
The cost of a small umbrella of 3.5 feet is Rs 3,500 while the price of the bigger one would range anywhere between Rs 30,000 and Rs 35,000.
Note - It must be noted that Small colorful umbrellas are widely used in Kerala during temple festivals.  These umbrellas are known as Muthukuda. The famous display of umbrellas during Thrissur Pooram in Kerala attracts thousands of devotees. Here each year specially designed umbrellas are created.