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Putlur Angala Parameswari Temple, Chennai

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Nowhere else in India can you find a temple, where the main deity is found in the form of a natural anthill but at Putlur’s Angala Parameswari Amman Temple, located near Chennai. The Putru or anthill has a lovely face, parted lips, kind eyes, dainty eyebrows, hands, legs, and, most interestingly, a pregnant belly. Though poorly lit and narrow, the sight of this temple fills one with awe and wonder. This temple is very famous, and devotees flock to it from all parts of the country to seek the blessings of the Goddess. The Goddess is seen in the form of a woman suffering from labor pains, lying with her mouth open. Behind the sanctum sanctorum, one can see shrines for Lord Ganesha, Lord Nataraja as Thandavarayan, and Angala Parameswari.

People who lack children come here to pray for progeny, and also solutions for other problems, wish-fulfillment, etc. It is a custom for devotees to purchase five lemons and bangles from the shops selling pooja items outside. Once people enter the temple, they cannot go out again for any purchases. Devotees have to worship at the Putru orant hill first before worshipping the main deity, and then all the remaining deities. The temple and its precincts are very neat and tidy. The temple is maintained by HR and CE, Tamilnadu. Many people stay overnight on full moon or Pournami days. The next morning, a special prayer is conducted at 5 am for those who stay awake and pray through the night.

On Sundays, Tuesdays, Fridays, and full moon days, it is very crowded at the temple.

Legend of Putlur Angala Parameshwari Amman temple

Putlur Angala Parameswari Temple

The story goes that Lord Shiva and Parvati were once walking from Melmalayanur to Ramapuram. This is the place where this temple is situated, but later it came to be known as Putlur as the Goddess manifested in the form of a Putru or anthill. In those days, this place was a dense forest full of neem trees. Parvati was exhausted after the long walk, so she sat down and requested Lord Shiva to bring her some water. Shiva set off in search of water but could not find any. Finally, he had to go to the river Cooum, which had pristine water then. Suddenly, it began raining heavily, and the river became flooded. So he decided to wait for the rain to subside. Meanwhile, Parvati got tired of waiting for Shiva. Overcome by hunger and thirst, the Goddess lay down on the floor. Soon, an anthill came up over her, and she merged with it.

After some time, Lord Shiva returned and found that Parvati had merged with the anthill, and taken up permanent residence in the place. So he too stood beside her and came to be called Thandavarayan. This is probably the only Amman temple where you can find a Nandi before the sanctum sanctorum. The reason is the presence of Shiva, who stands behind the Goddess.

There is another legend associated with the temple. Once, a poor villager who had a lot of debts was punished by a rich man for not repaying them. As punishment, he was also told to plough a rocky land overnight. While he was ploughing, he found blood oozing from an anthill. As people believed that the Goddess was present in the Putru, the villagers began to worship it, and the village came to be called Putlur.

Rites and Rituals

Devotees who visit the temple are asked to come with 5 lemons. Before a devotee enters the temple, a lemon is rotated thrice around the head, in both a clockwise and anticlockwise direction. This is to remove the ‘drishti’ or evil eye. It is then thrown down and crushed under the left foot. After this, one has to impale three lemons on a Trishul or spear inside the temple. Another lemon is placed in front of the Nandi, which stands in front of the Goddess.

Following this, a Neideepam should be lighted at the anthill, and then, in two containers kept for the purpose, one puts some kumkum and turmeric powder. After going around the deity, two garlands, usually of lemon, are given to the priest. Both are put on the deity, and later, one would be returned. This has to be put in the entrance of the house. People can also keep it in their shops, vehicles, or pooja rooms. Lemons rolled on kumkum at the feet of the Goddess are given as Prasad. The bangles are given to the priest, after which he gives other bangles as prasad. The lemon will be smeared with kumkum from a stone near the Goddess’s feet, and the female devotees collect it in their sari pallu. If the lemon slips and falls down, it is believed to be inauspicious. Men can receive the lemon in their hands.

On exiting the temple, another huge anthill can be found to the right of the sanctum sanctorum under the Sthala Vriksham, which is the neem tree. This anthill does not have a human figure and resembles an ordinary one.

During full moon days, there is an overnight pooja which is very famous.

Significance of the temple

The temple is visited by many women devotees who desire to have progeny. Once their wishes are fulfilled, they tie pieces of their sari pallu or small cradles on the neem tree near the anthill. A lot of neem trees can be found within the temple premises. People also offer bananas/jaggery, equivalent to the weight of their children.

Festivals

Shivaratri and Masi Magham festivals are celebrated in February-March while Aadi Fridays are observed in July-August. New Moon day poojas are also celebrated here.

How to reach

This temple is near a place called Tiruvallur, which can be reached easily by train. From Chennai Central, one has to take a train to Tiruvallur, Tiruttani or Arakkonam, and disembark at Putlur. It should not be an express train which stops at certain stations only. From there, one can walk or take a share auto to the temple.p>

Address:

Sri Angala Parameswari Temple
Ramapuram (Putlur)-602 025
Tiruvallur district.
Phone: +91- 94436 39825.

Temple Timings

6.00 a.m. - 1.00 p.m; 2.00 p.m. - 7.30 p.m.

S No Day/Temple Pooja Timing Timings
1 Monday 6:00 am - 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm - 7:30 pm
2 Tuesday 6:00 am - 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm - 7:30 pm
3 Wednesday 6:00 am - 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm - 7:30 pm
4 Thursday 6:00 am - 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm - 7:30 pm
5 Friday 6:00 am - 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm - 7:30 pm
6 Saturday 6:00 am - 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm - 7:30 pm
7 Sunday 6:00 am - 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm - 7:30 pm

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