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The legend of Kelan.
Meladath Chakki, a woman who was a landlord from Kunnaru, Ramanthali near Payyanur found a baby boy from the forests of Poonkumbam, Wayanadu. She named him Kelan and raised him as her own. As a young man, Kelan was interpid, vigorous, quick-witted, and was very devoted to his mother. With Kelan's hardwork the fields at Kunnaru flourished. Seeing this Chakki Amma decided to send him off to her fields at Poonkumbam. So Kelan started his journey for Wayanadu and before he left he drank toddy from his home and took some along with him for the road. After reaching Poonkumbam he cleaned the place out by cutting down all the bushes from the four jungles surrounding his field. He only left behind a gooseberry tree in the fourth jungle. On that gooseberry tree two snakes lived named Kali and Karali. Intoxicated Kelan, set fire from all four sides of the jungle and jumped through the fire daringly. He got entertained in this process. So after burning three jungles down, he set ablaze to the fourth jungle but this time the fire became wild and he couldn’t escape it's soaring flames. As his last resort he climbed onto the top of the gooseberry tree. Scared the two snakes climbed onto Kelan's chest and bit him. Kelan along with the snakes, fell into the fire and got burned to ashes. Wayanattu Kulavan, another warrior god who was passing by the burnt forest, saw the image of Kelan in the ashes. With his hunting bow traced out Kelan and gave his life back. Wayanattu Kulavan blessed Kelan and renamed him as Kandanar Kelan. To depict how Kelan escapes from the fire, this theyyam runs through fire. The theyyam is a manifestation of the Kandanar Kelan and his rage against the fire that burned him.
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