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Chandanakkavu Ganapathy Temple

From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By P.R.Ramachander

This temple, managed by the Shaiva Vellalars of Tamil Nadu, is situated in a town called Chandakkavu, which is about 16 km from the present-day town of Alapuzha. It seems that a large number of Shaiva Vellalars migrated to places near Alapuzha in search of jobs. One of them brought a Ganapathi statue from Shankaranayinr koil in Tirunelveli district of TamilNadu. Initially a small temple was built in a place called Purakkadu, which was on the shores of the sea. Once when this temple was destroyed by the sea waves, they requested the king of Champagaserry to allot them land to build a temple of their own. The king gave them three acres in Chandanakkavu. Initially, they only built a Ganapathi temple, but later they also added a statue of Durga of Ujjain with 18 hands. She is called Mutharamman in this temple and is the family deity of the Vellalars. Later they also added Lord Shiva, Brahma rakshas, Yogini devi, Madasamy, Bhairavaswamy, Nagaraja and Naga Yakshi. Madasamy and Bhairavasamy are the guardian Gods of some of these families.

The most important festival of the Ganapathi temple is Vinayaga Chathurthi. That day, a Maha Ganapathi Homam is held there. Besides this every Friday a Ganapathi homam is also performed.

The shiva temple built in the north east part of the plot, is considered as very important. Mruthyunjaya Homam leading to long life is conducted here on request. Shivarathri is celebrated in a grand scale. On that day, little children bring all the necessities for Pooja on a Kavadi from the nearby Saraswathi Temple.

There are also special poojas for Mutharamman during the Mandala period. On the tenth day of Chithirai (Meda masam), Pongal is offered by ladies to Mutharamman.

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