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Few photographs from a recent assignment for OPEN in the Thanjavur (Tanjore) region of Tamil Nadu, once home to the Trinity of Carnatic music- Tyagaraja, Syama Sastri and Muthuswamy Dikshithar.

Devotees observing penance for Lord Ayyappan of Sabarimala in Kerala, bathed in the Cauvery behind the musician-saint Tyagaraja’s samadhi in Thiruvaiyaru near Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu.

Raghavan, 10, a sixth-generation descendant of Tyararaja, does his Sandhyavandanam rituals in the morning by the samadhi of the saint in Thiruvaiyaru near Thanjavur in Tamil Nadu.

Dr. Rama Kausalya, 67, teaches music to underprivileged kids at her Marabu Foundation in Thillaisthanam near Thiruvaiyaru in Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu.

Tyagaraja Sharma, 36, a fifth-generation descendant of Tyagaraja, performs morning puja at the saint’s samadhi in Thiruvaiyaru in Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu.

Devotees light lamps at the Brihadeeswarar temple on the occasion of Karthigai Somavaram (Monday in the month of Karthika) in Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu.


Raghavan, 10, a sixth-generation descendant of Tyagaraja, sets up lights on the kolam on the occasion of Karthigai festival in front of their house at Thiruvaiyaru near Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu.