Pathanamthitta: Sabarimala shrine will remain closed for four hours on December 26 due to the solar eclipse. The Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB), which manages the Ayyappa shrine, said the sanctum santorum would be closed between 7:30am and 11:30am on the day.

The solar eclipse will reportedly occur from 8:06am to 11:13am on December 26. The temple would be closed after its customary daily rituals and poojas including 'Neyyabhishekam'. The temple would be reopened after 'punyaham', the purification ritual post the eclipse, the temple executive officer said.

According to reports, the other TDB-run temples, including the Malikappuram and Pamba shrines, would also be closed during the time of the solar eclipse. Meanwhile, the Sabarimala shrine, where the annual Mandalam Makaravilakku pilgrimage began on November 17, has been witnessing a heavy rush of devotees.