On the eve of Lal Darwaza Bonalu festival today, a large number of devotees have thronged the temples in Hyderabad. Right from early morning, devotees carried bonam (prasad) on their heads to offer it to Goddess Mahankali. Lal Darwaza Bonalu is one of the major festivals of Telangana region and it has been celebrated with much pomp and geity for the past 104 years. The legend has it that cholera epidemic broke out in twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad in the early 1900s and people residing in the city prayed Goddess that they would offer her bonam (meaning food) in case cholera is vanished from the city. And it was said that cholera swept out. Since then every year, the decendants of those who prayed the Goddess to save their kin and keath during cholera outbreak offer bonam to the deity and thus the festival got the name bonalu (plural of bonam).
The pots will be beautifully decorated with vermillion and turmeric in which the devotees put cooked rice. The same pots will be kept on their heads and move towards temple in a procession where they offer bonalu to the Goddess. Since this is the biggest festival in the region, all Shakti temples in the city have been beautifully decorated. A large number of VIPs are also going to flock temples at several parts of the city to seek blessings of Goddess.