The word Thaipusam is a combination of the name of the month, Thai, and the name of a star, Pusam. This particular star is at its highest point during the festival. The festival commemorates the occasion when Parvati gave Murugan a Vel “spear” so he could vanquish the evil demon Soorapadman.Thaipusam or Thai Poosam is a Hindu festival celebrated mostly by the Tamil community. It falls in Tamil Solar month Thai which is Solar month Makara in other Hindu calendars. It is celebrated not only in countries where the Tamil community constitutes a majority but also in countries where Tamil communities are smaller such as Mauritius, Singapore and Malaysia. This festival is also referred as Thaipooyam and Thaippooyam.
This festival commemorates the occasion when Parvati gave Murugan a Vel or spear so he could vanquish the evil demon Soorapadam. Don’t assume that you have to be in India to see Thaipusam. The festival is celebrated in India, Sri Lanka, Southeast Asia, Mauritius, and pretty much anywhere that there is a sizable Tamil community.