Thursday, June 13, 2024
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Goravanahalli Sri Mahalakshmi Temple of 1900s!

There are always a few stand alone exclusive temple’s of the Goddess of Wealth – Sri Mahalakshmi, the wife of Lord Vishnu! I am still pondering on the reason! As to why?
80 Kms from Bangalore traversing the Bangalore Pune (Mumbai) highway towards Tumkur, a lovely toll paying road to drive on, one needs to take a right turn at Dobbespet at Goravanahalli Cross, recommend you ask the simple village folks who hang around under the flyover for directions over here!The hereby Ravi Tatte Idli hotel which opens at 7 AM is famous outhere. From here it’s 37 Kms of lonely state highway and these rural picturesque roads takes you to the temple of money, wealth and prosperity. Make your wish and hope your requests are met with. This temple opens at 6 AM and shuts at 12:30 PM. It again opens its doors in the evening at 5:30 PM and shuts it’s doors at 8 PM. There are poojas and artis and special poojas going on through the day. A lot of shops around the temple hard sell you the ritualistic pooja materials like bangles, sarees, kum kum, haldi and other such items. It’s there way of livelihood and an appeasement for the devote, devotees! Photography and Videography is not allowed. The poojas are done by male priests. Tuesdays and Fridays, devotees throng this temple in large numbers. During Karthikmasa, Lakshadeepotsava – a festival of a lakh oil lit lamps mesmerise the temple atmosphere, it’s a beautiful sight to witness!
Going back to early history around 1900s, the idol of Sri Mahalakshmi was self manifested and came into possession of a poor villager called, Abbayya, he prospered well with devoted praying to the Devi, Sri Mahalakshmi. He named his house ‘Lakshminivasa’ and indulged in a lot of charitable work with the new found money and wealth. In time his brother Thodappa joined him in the pursuit. After Abbayya’s death, the devote brother Thodappa took over the rituals and prayers of the deity. He also got a vision and dream, where the Devi Sri Mahalakshmi asked him to build a temple for her, which he did! After Abbayya and Thodappa, the temple came into the hands of a village man, Chowdavya. The temple didn’t have any major activity between 1925!
An ardent devotee, Kamalamma came in 1925 and started the poojas and rituals for a brief time. But she left the place. Again in 1952, Kamalamma came back, settled in the village and gave a fresh start to this glorious, Goravanahalli Sri Mahalakshmi Temple. She single handedly took charge of the temple activities and built this South Indian Architecture colourful gopura temple. A lot of general public, celebrities, politicians visit and pray at this temple. Today it’s a mini Island of divinity! I attended the early morning temple at 6: 30 AM and it was simply divine. With day passing through and public transport reaching this place. The temple gets crowded. There are direct buses from Bangalore, Tumkur, Kotagere and Dobbespet. The nearest railway station is Tumkur, 30 Kms away. Many important trains make a brief stop here Viz, Jan Shatabdi going to Hubli, Rani Chennamma Express, Gold Gumbaz Express, etc. But nothing like having your own transport. The temple serves lunch to it’s devotees. In addition to the Sri Mahalakshmi Devi Idol, there are other idols of, Naga Deva and Marikamba. The beauty of the Mahalakshmi Idol enamoured you, the Main Idol is unique, it has Shanku – the Conch, Chakra – the Divine Wheel, Nama – the Tilak and the Lotus – the divine flower of Hinduism. Kamalamma the founder is known as the Divine Mother – Mata Kamalamma, the founder. Her life size statue is reverendly placed in the temple campus.
It’s a day trip of divine intervention. One can club your trip with other places in and around Tumkur. A car or even a two wheeler is good enough to travel around these places. Other people can opt for the good public transport. Kindly carry cash. The eating restaurants and staying hotels are on the highway or Tumkur, the nearest place of civilization. The highway is a busy heavy traffic zone, drive with caution and care.
-Jagdeesh Laxman Singh
aka Jugie Singh
Text & Photography

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