Travancore Devaswom Board Prohibits Arali Flower in Prasadam and Nivedyam

The Travancore Devaswom Board has announced a ban on the use of Arali flowers in prasadam and nivedyam offerings. This action comes amidst growing concerns over the toxicity of Arali flowers. Chairman P S Prasanth stated that the decision was made in response to community concerns, clarifying that Arali flowers would still be used for pujas. The ban is set to take effect starting tomorrow.

The decision to prohibit Arali flowers follows reports of fatalities and incidents involving the plant. Surya Surendran, a resident of Haripad, reportedly died after consuming Arali leaves, while a cow and calf belonging to Vasudeva Kurup from Manju Bhavan in Thengamam perished after ingesting the plant’s leaves and stems. Despite veterinary intervention, the animals succumbed to the toxicity of the Arali plant.

Arali is known to contain glycosides that can adversely affect the heart, with all parts of the plant being toxic. Although in Ayurveda, Arali flowers are processed and detoxified to produce certain oils, caution is exercised due to its inherent toxicity. Previously, yellow and pink Arali flowers were used in villages as fencing material.

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