A temple in a tank

A temple in a tank

Shidlaghatta special

QUEUE PLEASE! Devotees form a beeline to catch a glimpse of Lord Ananathapadmanabha at Chandrapushkarani tank in Kambalahalli village in Shidlaghatta taluk. DH photo

Suprabhata and numerous rituals associated with the Mahotsav will be conducted under the aegis of seer Savyasachi and Dharmashikari seer Thiru.

The distinct feature of the lord Ananthapadmanabha is that the idol in sleeping posture is located at Chandrapushkarani tank, which lies between hills.

Prayers cannot be offered to the deity during rainy season, as the temple gets submerged in the tank. As a result the temple trust has decided to construct another temple without obstructing prayers to the procession deity.

The trust has begun the construction of gopura imitating the seven-headed serpent at an estimated cost of Rs 3 crore.  Also plans are underway to construct a majestic gateway, old age home, shelter for the homeless, goshala, yoga, sanskrit and Agama Veda schools, said trustees.

The temple authorities will ensure that ‘trividha dasoha’ - proving food, education and shelter- will continue without any hurdles, he added.

A bit of legend

In the ancient times, Gavichandrayaswamy Temple near Chintamani was an abode of devout brahmins. A god-fearing brahmin was bestowed with seven daughters from his first wife. On performing Ashtakshari Mahayaga, his second wife gave birth to a seven-headed serpent.

At the wedding of one of the daughters, the seven-headed serpent considering its presence to be inauspicious, curled itself and stayed put in one of the corners, unnoticed by the others.

Cooks in a hurry mistook the curled serpent to a stand and placed a huge utensil containing hot payasa (a sweet dish), killing the serpent.

On knowing the death of their son, both the mothers and the seven sisters died on the spot.

A god who had taken the form of a serpent, owing to a curse, chose the land and granted it to the brahmin for performing the last rites.

Also, the god directed the brahmin to install lord Ananthapadmanabha and offer prayers at the designated land. As a result, a temple was constructed dedicating it to lord Ananthapadmanabha. Apart from Thiruvananthapuram, this is the only place which has a temple dedicated to the deity.