Posts

Shanidham

Shanidham Temple, Chattarpur

Shree Shanidham Temple is located in the capital city of India, Delhi. It is known for its world’s biggest rock idol of God Shani. God Shani is the chief deity of this temple; the temple also has shrines for several other gods – God Hanuman, Goddess Jagadamba, a huge Shiv Lingam, and various other gods. The temple consists of no priest or a sage. All the devotees perform various poojas by themselves to the Shani idol.

The rock idol of God Shani was established in 2003 by ‘Anant Shree Vibhushit Jagat Guru Shankracharya Swami Madhavasharam Ji Maharaj’. It is believed that whoever performs a pooja to the deity of this temple, their sins would be forever washed away. All the pooja material is made available by the temple for nominal rates. No material from outside the temple is allowed due to security issues. The money thus collected is used for various charitable works. Once the devotees enter the temple premises, no one talks to one another but stays in a quiet pious chanting the god’s name.

The Shanidham temple also has its own non-profit, non-governmental voluntary trust that organizes various social welfare activities under the expert guidance of ‘Shree Sidh Shakti Peeth Shanidham Pithadhishwar Shree Shree 1008 Mahamadaleshwer Paramhans Daati Ji Maharaj (Nijswaroopanand ji Maharaj)’.  It also operates a goshala (cow shelter), Gurukul Ashwasan Baal Gram – a resident school the helps children of the backward communities receive basic necessities, education, and professional training programmes.

Shanidham

Shanidham History

  • The world’s largest Shani idol was unveiled by ‘Anant Shree Vibhushit Jagat Guru Shankracharya Swami Madhavasharam Ji Maharaj’, on 31st May, 2003 at Asola, Fatehpur Behri, Delhi.
  • A Shani idol was also established at Pali, Rajasthan.
  • The temple since has been a great pious place of worship for devotees of God Shani.

Significance of the Shanidham Temple

  • When the idol of God Shani was unveiled, ‘Shree Sidh Shakti Peeth Shanidham Pithadhishwar Shree  Shree 1008 Mahamadaleshwer Paramhans Daati Ji Maharaj (Nijswaroopanand ji Maharaj)’ had performed chanting of Shani Mantras for one hundred Crores and thirty two lakhs on this sacred grove.
  • Since then, it is believed that most of the problems of the devotees of God Shani are automatically solved when pray at this temple.
  • It is believed that the devotees’ problems would be solved when the idol is worshiped by offering oil (Tel abhishek) by them.
  • There are no priests or sages in this temple. All the devotees, both men and women, perform their own poojas to the God at the idol.
  • No devotee talks to one another, and maintain quiet and the pious of the place by indulging themselves in devotion, prayer and worship of the god.
  • Questions related to astrology, Ayurved, Yoga, and the Tantra would be answered at the temple.

Shanidham Temple Timings

Shanidham Temple is open to devotees 6 days a week.

Monday – Saturday: 11.00am – 2.00pm & 3.00pm – 7.00pm

Poojas and Rituals at Shanidham Temple

Shanidham Temple is mainly dedicated to the worship of God Shani. Though various festivals are celebrated, theregular poojas and rituals are mainly offered to the main deity, God Shani.

  • Offering oil (Telabhishek) to God Shani while chanting the mantras ‘Om Sham Shanishcharaya Nameh’, ‘Om Pram Preem Prom Se Shanishcharaya Nameh’, ‘Om Sham Shanishcharaya Nameh’ while circumambulating the ‘Shila Murty’ (idol) is the basic ritual at the temple.
  • Offering one’s footwear, embracing and kissing the idol is a traditional ritual.
  • On every Saturday and on Shani Amavasya religious poojas related to the deity are performed in the temple.

Festivals Celebrated at Shanidham Temple

  • Navratri Pooja –Navratri, also known as Durga Pooja, is a festival celebrated in the honor of nine different forms of the Goddess Durga, for nine consecutive days. The Goddess of Power is worshipped during these days in order to seek her blessings and protection.
  • Deepawali Pooja – Deepawali, the festival of lights, is the festival of Goddess Laxmi, the Goddess of prosperity and wealth. It is believed that when Goddess Laxmi is offered pooja and worship on the eve of Deepawali, she blesses her devotees with peace and prosperity. On the eve of Deepawali, a traditional ‘Lakshmi Pooja’ is performed after sunset.
  • Special Pooja on Shani Amawasya – On each ‘Shani Amavasya’, rituals such as ‘Pitra Dosh’ & ‘Kaal Sarpa Dosh’ are performed at Shani Dham to the God. On such occasions, special worship and ‘Telabhishek’ (bathing the idol of God Shani with mustard oil) are performed.

Activities at Shanidham Temple

The Shree Shanidham Trust is a non-profit, non-governmental social welfare organization. The Trust is engaged in social welfare activities in different parts of India but is primarily focused in Rajasthan. Some of the activities conducted and organized by the trust are:

  • Helping people affected by drought.
  • Providing free fodderfor cattle.
  • Arranging food, clothes, and blankets to the needy.
  • Organizing free medical camps in remote parts of Rajasthan.
  • Pensions for the elderly and needy.
  • Scholarships for meritorious students.
  • Providing tricyclesto the disabled.
  • Arranging potable waterin the interior rural areas of Rajasthan.

Where to Eat

There are many AC/Non-AC restaurants and dhabas around Chattarpur area which serve healthy multi-cuisines.

Where to Stay

There are several 3-star to 5-star hotels and lodges located around the mandir area which provide good accommodation options.

How to reach

By Air: Indira Gandhi International Airport is the official airport of Delhi, and is around 16.6 km from Shanidham mandir.

By Rail: Delhi city operates a well connected metro rail. Nearest metro stations to the temple are Chattarpur station and Qutub metro station.

By Road: Several state government run buses and taxis operate round the city which transport to Chattarpur area.

Nearby Attractions

  • Chattarpur Temple – Officially known as the ‘Shri Aadya Katyayani Shakti Peetham’, it is located in Chattarpur area of south Delhi. Constructed from marble, it is the second largest temple complex in India, and is dedicated to Goddess Katyayani. It can be classified a vessara style of architecture. The temple architecture is classified as vessara architecture with jaali (perforated stone work) on all facets of the temple.
  • Qutub Minar – At 120 meters, it is the tallest brick minaret in the world, and the second tallest minarin India. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and is located in the Mehrauli area of Delhi, India. Made of red sand stone and marble, the minar is covered with iron intricate carvings and verses from the Qur’an. The nearby 7 meters high Iron Pillar from Gupta Empire is a metallurgical curiosity. This pillar has Brahmic inscriptions on it and predates the Islamic minar.
  • Uttara Swami Malai Temple – Popularly known as Malai (Hill) Temple, it is dedicated to God Swaminatha, the younger son Shiva-Parvathi. The main temple within the complex, formally called Sree Swaminatha Swami Temple, houses the Sanctum Sanctorum of God Swaminatha. The complex contains temple shrines dedicated to Sree Karpaga Vinayagar (God Ganesh), Sree Sundareswarar (God Shiva) and Devi Meenakshi (Goddess Parvathi). The architecture of these shrines draw inspiration from the Pandya style of South Indian Temple Architecture.

Akshardham Delhi

The Swaminarayan Akshardham, New Delhi

The gigantic and mesmerizing Akshardham Temple located on the banks of River Yamuna in New Delhi is a visual treat for visitors. Akshardham Delhi Complex has been developed by Pramukh Swami Maharaj, the spiritual head of Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS). Akshardham Delhi is dedicated to Sri Swaminarayan, the deity worshiped in the Swaminarayan sect of Hinduism. This sect is a sub-sect of Vaishnava Hinduism and has its origins in Gujarat. Followers of this sect believe that Swaminarayan is an avatar of the Nara Narayana who performed penance at Badarikashram. They believe that Narayana took rebirth as Swaminarayan to destroy evil and establish “Ekantik-Dharma”- a religion based on morality, knowledge, detachment and devotion.

Akshardham Delhi Complex begins with the visit to the ten stone gates that signify the ten directions. The pilgrim then passes through the Bhakti Dwar (Gate of Devotion), the Visitor Centre and the Mayur Dwar (Peacock Gate).  Between these two gates, the Charnarving (holy footprints) of Sri Swaminarayan is located. The main attraction of the complex is the Akshardham Mandir. The 141 feet high, 316 feet wide and 356 feet long Rajasthani pink stone structure presents an imposing view fit to be called as the Abode of God (Akshardham).  Akshardham Delhi has two circumambulation paths – the Narayan Peeth and the Gajendra Peeth. The Gajendra Peeth depicts the legends and the importance of Elephants in the Hindu culture.

The inner sanctum or the Garbhagruh is home to the Sri Swaminarayan and his succession of Gurus. Special shrines are also dedicated to Sri Sita-Ram, Radha-Krishna, Lakshmi-Narayan, and Shiv-Parvati. The nine intricately carved mandaps depicting stories of the life of Sri Swaminarayan are an architectural wonder.

Akshardham Delhi 2

Akshardham Delhi Complex also runs three exhibitions, each imparting knowledge, and wisdom to the visiting devotees. The exhibitions are the Sahajanand Darshan, Neelkanth Darshan, and Sanskruti Vihar. The Sahajanand Darshan is a visual portrayal of Hindu Cultural values like peace, perseverance, morality, family harmony, vegetarianism, and non-violence. The Neelkanth Darshan takes the visitors through an epic journey of the young Neelkanth across the Indian Subcontinent. The Sanskruti Vihar is a 15-minute boat ride that takes us past the glorious history of India in from the Vedic times till now. It highlights contributions of important personalities in various fields like philosophy, mathematics, art, music, economics and religious movements. Besides these, the Yagnapurush Kund, Garden of India and the Yogi Hriday Kamal are must visit features of the Temple Complex.

Akshardham Delhi History

  • The Akshardham Delhi was the vision of Yogiji Maharaj in 1968. Yogiji Maharaj was the fourth successor of Swaminarayan, worshiped in the Swaminarayan sect of Hinduism. His vision was to build a grand temple dedicated to Sri Swaminarayan on the banks of River Yamuna. However, his wish could not be realized before he passed away.
  • In 1982, Pramukh Swami Maharaj put forward a request to the Delhi Development Authority (DDA). In 2000, the DDA offered 60 acres of land and the Uttar Pradesh Government offered 30 acres of land. The construction was started on 8 November 2000 and was officially completed on 6 November 2005.
  • The Swaminarayan Akshardham Temple was inaugurated on 6 November 2005 by the honorable Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam.
  • As per the sect of Swaminarayan in Vaishnava Hinduism, the origin of the sect begins with the Nara-Narayana (twin brothers) avatar of Lord Vishnu. The Hindu Mahabharata identifies God Krishna with Narayana and Arjuna with Nara (the human among the twins). The followers of the Swaminarayan faith believe that Swaminarayan is an incarnation of Narayana.

Significance of the Akshardham Delhi Temple

  • The architecture of the Bhakti Dwar and the Mayur Dwar are mesmerizing. The Bhakti Dwar is intricately carved and possesses sculptures of several Gods and Goddesses like Lakshmi-Narayan, Akshar-Purushottam, Parvati-Shiv, Sita-Ram, Radha-Krishna, Nar-Narayan and many more. The Mayur Dwar has 869 carved images of Peacocks welcoming visitors. It is believed that Peacock stands for Beauty and Self-Control in Indian Culture.
  • The architectural style of the Temple Complex is a blend of several styles from across India. As per the traditional Hindu Shilpa Shastras, no ferrous material has been used for its construction. The structure receives no support from steel or concrete.
  • The majestic structure of the Akshardham Mandir consists of 234 carved pillars, nine domes, Gajendra Pith (base of the structure carved with 148 elephants together weighing 3000 tons) and about 20,000 sculptures of Sadhus, Acharyas, and devotees.
  • The external surface or the wall of a traditional stone temple is called a Mandovar. The external surface area of the Akshardham Temple is the largest carved Mandovar in India in the last 800 years.
  • The Narayan Sarovar that surrounds the Temple is unique as it consists water from 151 rivers and lakes believed to have been sanctified by Sri Swaminarayan. Some of the rivers, lakes and sangams are – Mansarovar, Pushkar Sarovar, Pampa Sarovar, Indradyumna Sarovar, Manikarnika Ghat, Prayag, River Ganga, River Yamuna, River Shipra and many more.
  • The Temple has been adjudged as the “World’s Largest Comprehensive Hindu Temple” in the Guinness World Records. However, the record is being contested by three temples – the Madurai Meenakshi Temple, Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple in Srirangam and the Annamalaiyar Temple in Thiruvannamalai. They argue that these three temples are as big as the Akshardham and are actually temples where the worship of God is carried out.
  • The Neelkanth Darshan exhibition is the first large format film on India, made by an Indian Organization, the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha. The theater houses New Delhi’s first and only large format screen.
  • The Yagnapurush Kund is India’s largest step well. The Stepwell means a series of steps, artistically arranged going down towards the centrally placed Yagna Kund. The Yagna Kund is Lotus shaped.

Akshardham Delhi Temple Timings

  • The Temple Complex opens at 9:30 AM and the last entry allowed into the complex is at 6:30 PM.
  • The Temple remains closed on every Monday.
  • The Temple or the Mandir is open from 9:30 AM to 8 PM. The Aarti is performed at 10 AM and 6 PM.
  • The Abhishek Mandap is open from 9:30 AM to 8 PM. The Aarti is performed at 6:30 PM.
  • The Ticket window of the Exhibition remains open from 10 AM till 5 PM.
  • The Water Show usually starts at 7:15 PM after the sunset.

Dress Code at Akshardham Delhi

The Temple follows a general dress code as per which the upper wear of both men and women should cover shoulders, chest, navel and upper arms. The temple allows pants and shorts as long as they are below the knee-length. In case, the dress of the visitor is deemed inappropriate, a sarong is provided free of cost.

Festivals celebrated at the Akshardham Delhi Temple

The Temple is decorated and lit with lights on occasions like Diwali, Navaratri, and Janmashtami

Poojas and Rituals at Akshardham Delhi

Abhishek – Devotees can perform the ceremony of ritual bathing known as Abhishek of the idol of Neelkanth Varni, the youthful form of Sri Swaminarayan. The ritual involves tying a sacred thread on the wrist followed by the recital of shlokas and mantras. After the Pooja, the devotee performs the Abhishek with a pot of sanctified water.

How to reach Akshardham Delhi

  • By Air – The Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi is situated at a distance of 21 km from Akshardham. One can take a taxi to reach Akshardham. The Public Bus number 534 connects Akshardham to the Airport. However, public bus transport is not recommended for visitors with more luggage to carry. Alternatively, one can take the Orange Metro Line to reach New Delhi Metro Station. Take the yellow line from the station to reach the Rajiv Chowk Station. Finally, take the blue line to reach the Akshardham Metro Station.
  • By Train – The capital city of New Delhi is well connected to all parts of the country. The city has a network of small local railway stations with three major railway stations dispersed throughout the city. They are New Delhi Junction, Hazrat Nizamuddin and Old Delhi Railway Station. These stations are situated 11 km, 6 km and 10 km away respectively from the Akshardham Temple. Several city buses connect these stations to Akshardham Temple.
  • By Road – The Kashmiri Gate Bus Stand is situated 13 km away from the Akshardham Temple and is well-connected by buses as well as Metro to the Temple. The buses from Haryana and Rajasthan stop here. The Sarai Kale Khan bus stand is located just 5.5 km from the Temple complex. The Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) buses connect these two bus stands to Akshardham. The Anand Vihar Terminal is located 11 km from the Temple. Buses arriving from the neighboring state of Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand halt here.

Where to stay

New Delhi is a metropolitan and a cosmopolitan city that boasts a large array of hotels ranging from basic lodges to seven-star hotels. Akshardham is situated near residential colonies. However, important business areas like Noida are located nearby. They provide a large range of options for a comfortable stay.

Where to eat

The Premvati Food Court is open inside the Temple Complex. The ambiance of the food court resembles the Ajanta and Ellora caves. Pure vegetarian cuisine, as well as Continental cuisine, is served to the devotees at nominal rates.

The city offers a wide range of culinary delights. Some of the must haves when visiting Delhi are the Kebabs at Karims, Chaats at Chandni Chowk, South Indian delights at Saravana Bhavan, and the Biryanis at the Hyderabad House. The city is famous for sweets like Jalebis and Barfis. Several restaurants serve a variety of cuisines like Mughlai, Hyderabadi, South Indian, Punjabi, Chinese, Italian, Thai, and much more.

Nearby Temples

  • Uttara Swami Malai Mandir – The Temple is located in Ramakrishna Puram (RK Puram) Sector-7. The shrine is popularly known as the Malai Mandir, Malai meaning Hill in Tamil. The Temple is dedicated to Lord Karthikeya and is constructed following the Chola architecture. The main sanctum is located atop a hill. Apart from the main shrine, Lord Vinayaka, Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati are also worshiped here.
  • Birla Mandir – The Temple also known as the Laxminarayan Mandir is situated on Mandir Marg. The Temple was inaugurated by Mahatma Gandhi. The main shrine is dedicated to Lord Swaminarayan, another name of Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi. The other shrines are dedicated to Lord Shiva, Lord Krishna and Buddha. The Temple was built by the legendary B.R Birla.
  • Hanuman Temple – The unique and ancient temple is situated in Connaught Place, Delhi. The Temple is believed to be one of the five ancient shrines in Delhi whose importance can be dated back to the epic Mahabharata. The idol of the presiding deity, Lord Hanuman is believed to be self-manifested. The Temple has glorious past and is still visited by lakhs of devotees every year.
  • Chhatarpur Temple – The Temple is known as the Shri Aadya Katyayani Shakti Peetham. The Temple is dedicated to Goddess Katyayani, one of the nine forms of Goddess Durga. The Temple is the second largest temple complex in India. The entire temple is constructed of marble and is an architectural delight.

Jagannath Temple

Jagannath Temple, Hauz Khas

Lord Jagannath, the God of the universe who symbolizes universal love is worshiped in the Jagannath Temple along with Balabhadra, Subhadra, Sudarshan, Madhaba, Sridevi and Bhudevi on the Ratnabedi or the bejewelled platform. The deities of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, Subhadra and Chakra Sudarshan are made of margosa wood.  The Jagannath temple at Hauz Khas is a centre of cultural conglomeration for Oriya community residing in Delhi.

Sree Neelachala Seva Sangh had established the temple in Hauz Khas in 1969 after procuring land from the Delhi Development Authority. The then Orissa Government had donated one lakh rupees for the temple. The mandir is centrally located in front of Thyagraj Nagar indoor stadium a kilometre away from INA Metro Station, adjacent to Safdarjung Bus Terminal and Lodi Colony Ring Railway station.

Jagannath Temple has been built according to the Odisha style of temple structure in the same design as of Shri Mandir in Puri. There is a Simhadwar at the front of the temple with 22 steps called “Baishi pahacha” that lead to Mukhashala. Chuturdha Deities (Shri Jagannath, Shri Balabhadra, Maa Subhadara and Shri Sudarshan) which are installed inside Garbhagriha of the Mandir.  In the same floor of the Mandir, other Deities, namely, Lord Shiva, Navagraha, at the East, Lord Hanuman at South West, Maa Bimala at North West and Maa Laxmi at North East are installed inside Their respective temples are separately built around the main Mandir of Lord Jagannath. In front of Mukha shala, there is a pillar called “Aruna stambha” built in marble stone facing the Chaturdha Deities. It is a tradition that before entering the main temple each devotee should touch/embrace Aruna stambha.

The Deities of many other gods and goddesses like Shri Baraha, Shri Narasimha, and Shri Bamana etc. have been engraved outside the structure of the main temple.This temple also serves as a centre of cultural, religious and spiritual interests of Oriyas in Delhi. The Lord’s Yatra began first in 1979 after the temple was built. This Mandir is managed by a Society called Shri Jagannath Mandir and Odisha Arts & Cultural  Centre, New Delhi (Regd.) under the Society of Registration Act, 1860 in the year 1968. Several charitable organizations are run by the society. The temple is mainly run by the donations of the devotees and other bhakts.

Jagannath-Temple-Delhi

Jagannath Temple History

  • Several legendary accounts found in the Skanda-Purana, Brahma Purana and other Puranas and later Oriya works suggest that LordJagannath was originally worshipped as Lord Neela Madhaba by a Savar king (tribal chief) named Viswavasu.
  • Hearing about the deity, King Indradyumnasent a Brahmin priest, Vidyapati to look for the deity, who was worshipped secretly in a dense forest by Viswavasu. After many failed attempts, he managed to marry Viswavasu’s daughter Lalita.
  • After many requests of Vidyapti, Viswavasu finally took his son-in-law blind folded to a cave where Lord Neela Madhaba was worshipped by him.
  • Vidyapati intelligently dropped mustard seeds on the ground on the way. The seeds germinated after a few days, which enabled him to find out the cave later on.
  • On hearing from him, KingIndradyumna proceeded immediately to Odra Desha (Odisha) on a pilgrimage to see and worship the Deity. But the deity had disappeared in the mean time. The king was extremely disappointed at this failure. The Deity was hidden in the sand.
  • The king was determined not to return without having a darshan of the deity and observed fast unto death at Mount Neela, then a celestial voice cried ‘thou shalt see him.’ Afterwards, the king performed a horse sacrifice and built a magnificent temple for Vishnu.
  • SriNarasimha Murti brought by Narada was installed in the temple. During sleep, the king had a vision of Lord  Also, an astral voice directed him to receive the fragrant tree on the seashore and make idols out of it.
  • Accordingly, the king got the image of LordJagannath, Balabhadra, Subhadra and Chakra Sudarshan made out of the wood of the divine tree and installed them in the temple.

Significance of the Jagannath Temple

The Jagannath Temple at Hauz Khas was built by the working class Oriya community in replication to the Puri temple. Jagannath, the God of the Universe is believed to be the fulfiller of one’s wishes. It is said that his blessings can make or mar a man. The person who gets to see his idol in his lifetime is considered to be lucky or punyavan.

Jagannath Temple Timings

Summer Timings: The Pahad opens at 5:00 am in the morning everyday. The morning poojas and other rituals are carried out. After the Prasad Vitaran, the Pahad reopens at 12:30 pm and closes at 10:00 pm.

Winter Timings: The Pahad opens at 6:00 am in the morning everyday. The morning poojas and other rituals are carried out. After the Prasad Vitaran, the Pahad reopens at 1:00 pm and closes at 9:00 pm.

Dress Code at Jagannath Temple

It is advisable to wear decent pieces of apparel when entering the temple. Ladies should be in traditional attire of sari, lehenga choli or salwar kameez. Leather items are not allowed inside the sanctum. People should leave their footwear behind while entering the temple.

Festivals Celebrated at the Jagannath Temple

Almost all Hindu festivals and certain festivals specific to the Oriya community are celebrated at the temple. The most important festival, however, is the Rath Yatra.

Rath Yatra: Rath Yatra is a Hindu festival associated with the god Jagannath which is held at the Jagannath Temple every year. It is the replication of the festival which happens at the same time in Puri.  This annual festival is celebrated on Ashadha Shukla Dwitiya (second day of the bright fortnight of Ashadha month) which coincides with the months of June-July. Rath Yatra translates into ‘The Chariot Journey’ in English. Over the period, the idols of Sri Jagannath, Balabhadra and Subhadra are placed in wooden chariots which are constructed over a period of time by skilled craftsmen and the chariots are carried across the streets which are strewn with flowers and grains by the devotees. They are carried for a couple of kilometers and they are brought back to their original place after the journey. It’s a visual treat to see thousands of devotees gathering on the streets and helping in sharing the burden of the chariots of the gods.

The other festivals celebrated at the Jagannath Temple are:

  1. Maha Vishuba Pana Sankranti / Hanuman Jayanti
  2. Shri Rama Navami
  3. Basantika Dushhara
  4. Ravinarayan Brata
  5. Chaitra Purnima
  6. Akshay Trutiya / Ratha Anukula
  7. Harishayana Ekadashi / Sunabesha
  8. Guru Purnima
  9. Shrikrishna Janmasthami
  10. Ganesh Chaturthi
  11. Navadinatmaka Puja Arambh
  12. Pithe Mahasthami Puja
  13. Pithe Maha Navami Puja
  14. Pithe Dushahera
  15. Dipawali
  16. Devabhisheka
  17. Makara Sankranti
  18. Saraswati Puja
  19. Holi

Poojas and Rituals at Jagannath Temple

  1. Mangal Aarti
  2. Abkash
  3. Balya Bhog
  4. Mandir Rosoi Ghar Hawan
  5. Surya Pooja
  6. Dwarpal Hawan
  7. Garud Pooja
  8. Snana, Sringar and Sohala Upchar Pooja
  9. Gopal Ballabh, Aarti and Pushpanjalee
  10. Gita Paath
  11.  Vishnu Sahashranam Paath
  12. Bada Bhog
  13. Aarti
  14. Pana Bhog
  15. Veda Paath
  16. Sri Bhagwat Paath
  17. Strotra Paath
  18. Sainkaleen Pooja
  19. Sandhaya Aarti
  20. Bhajan and Kirtan
  21. Shayan Aarti
  22. Bhada Bhog
  23. Geet Govinda Paath

How to Reach

  • By Road: Hauz Khas is one of the busiest suburbs of Delhi NCR. It is well connected by a network of roads, metros, and rail. The temple is well connected by bus and the Delhi Metro services. Besides, one can also rent a car or auto-rickshaw from anywhere and reach here. Delhi Transport Department has added morebuses to its fleet. Several new and old buses are in service which will take you to the Jagannath Temple Terminuses such as Kashmere Gate, Sarai Kale Khan, and Anand Vihar are located nearby which leads to various important places in the city.
  • By Rail: Many metro trains in New Delhi passes through Hauz Khas suburb. Whether one is coming from Noida, Gurgaon, India Gate, and the Airport or from the Delhi University area, they will find ample metro trains to reach the destination. Hauz Khas metro station is the nearest metro station to Jagannath Mandir, Delhi.
  • By Air: Delhi is well connected with domestic and international flights, to all the major cities within and outside India. Almost all the major airlines have their flights operating from Indira Gandhi International Airport of New Delhi. Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport is connected to all the important cities of the world with almost all the major international airlines operating from here.

Where to stay

The temple comes under a non-governmental organization and is handled by a large association who are appointed as members of the temple. The members look after all the administration processes and ensure proper flow of all the work. In order to accommodate tourist who visit here from various locations across the country. A Huge amount of people come to worship at Puri Jagannath after travelling for days. After a long journey, they wish to find a place to lie down and relax. Therefore, accommodation facilities have been provided to handle many people nearby the temple. Every day, the temple is cleaned for hygiene maintenance and the costumes of all the deities are changed along with ornaments. Apart from fine architecture, the temple overlooks bustling surroundings. The temple owns a self-run Dharamshala with up-to-date facilities. Rooms are available only on prior booking. AC rooms and Non-AC rooms are available for accommodation. Inmates can even avail the Prasad Sevan facility which is provided at affordable rates. Hauj Khas has several other 3 star and 5-star hotels catering to the needs of the visiting devotees.

Where to eat

Annaprasad is distributed everyday with prior booking. The meals are available at affordable prices both in the daytime and the night. Devotees generally eat at the temple. On a daily basis about 300-400 devotees/visitors take Anna Prasad at the Prasad Hall of the temple. Many restaurants are also available in the proximity.

Nearby Temples

  • Kalkaji Mandir – Kalkaji Mandir is a famous Hindu temple dedicated to Hindu Goddess Kali. This temple is located in the southern part of Delhi, India, in Kalkaji, a locality which has derived its name from this famous temple and is located right opposite to the Nehru Place business centre. The temple is easily commutable by all forms of public transport. The belief surrounding the temple is that the image of the Goddess Kalka or Kali, here is a self-manifested one, and the shrine dates back to Satya Yuga when the Goddess Kalika had incarnated and killed the demon Raktabija along with other giant demons.
  • ISCKON Temple– Generally known as the ISKCON Delhi temple, is a well known Vaishnav temple of Lord Krishna and Radharani in the form of Radha Parthasarathi. Opened in 1998, it is located at Hare Krishna Hills, in the East of Kailash area of New Delhi, India. It is one of the top tourist places in Delhi to visit
  • Lotus Temple- TheLotus Temple, located in New Delhi, India, is a Bahá’í House of Worship completed in 1986. Notable for its flowerlike shape, it serves as the Mother Temple of the Indian subcontinent and has become a prominent attraction in the city. The Lotus Temple has won numerous architectural awards and been featured in hundreds of newspaper and magazine articles.

Hanuman Mandir

Hanuman Mandir-  Abode of Bala Hanuman

The Pracheen Hanuman Mandir located at Connaught Place, New Delhi, is an ancient Hindu temple and is believed to be one of the five temples of the Mahabharata days in Delhi. The other four temples include the Kalkaji, a Kali temple in South Delhi containing a Swayambu rock Idol, the Yogmaya Temple near Qutub Minar, the Bhairav temple near the Purana Qila and the Nili Chatri Mahadev (Shiva temple) at Nigambodh Ghat. The temple, which houses a self-manifested idol of Hanuman, has an intriguing feature fixed in the spire which is in the form of a crescent moon instead of the Hindu symbol of “Om”. This feature became mainly important during the Mughal period henceforth corroborating this extraordinary depiction.
The idol which is devotionally worshipped in the temple is of Bala Hanuman, the infant depiction of Sri Hanuman Ji Maharaj. The entry to the temple is through the Baba Kharak Singh Marg where the temple is located. Devotees enter through a set of marble steps from the road which leads into the main foyer of the temple through massive silver plated doors, which are engraved with scenes of the epic Ramayana story. The foyer is well ventilated with clerestory windows which are beautifully adorned with paintings of Hanuman in the four cardinal directions depicting his four aspects. Below each Hanuman painting is present a marble inscription of Tulsidas’s Sundar Kand that is affixed to the walls. The Sanctum Sanctorum, that houses the Hanuman idol is on the north wall with the idol facing the southern direction. Images of Radha and Krishna, a central triumvirate of Rama, Lakshmana and Sita are also installed to the right of the Hanuman idol on the same wall.
As the idol of Hanuman faces the southern direction, devotees can only one eye of the idol. The idol depicts a Gada in the left hand with the right hand crossed across the chest showing devotion to the adjacent idol of lord Rama, Lakshman, and Sita. The idol is adorned with a tapering crown and also has a sacred thread on the right shoulder and is clad in a dhoti. The height of the temple is reportedly 108 ft (32.9 m). The ceiling of the main mandap depicts the epic story of Ramayana which is artistically painted.
One of the most important features of this temple is the 24–hour chanting of the mantra (hymn) “Sri Ram, Jai Ram, Jai Jai Ram”, since August 1, 1964, which has earned the temple a place in the Guinness Book of World Records. Several beliefs and traditional rituals are associated with this temple, one of them being that if the devotees whisper their heart’s wishes into the ears of the idol of Nandi bull (Lord Shiva’s mount) which is situated inside the temple, they are sure to be granted.

Hanuman

Hanuman Mandir History

  •  It was originally built by Maharaja Man Singh I of Amber who ruled from during Emperor Akbar’s reign and was reconstructed by Maharaja Jai Singh in 1724.
  • Tulsidas who wrote Ramacharitamanas visited this temple in Delhi.
  • During his visit to Delhi, he was summoned by the Mughal Emperor who asked him to perform a miracle, which he successfully did with the blessings of Lord Hanuman.
  • The Emperor was impressed by Tulsidas’ feat and presented the Hanuman temple with an Islamic crescent Moon finial which adorns the temple spire.
  • The popular legends suggest that because of the crescent moon symbol on the spire, the temple had not been     destroyed by the Muslim rulers who had invaded India at various times.
  • Of late the Delhi’s Municipal Corporation has taken it upon them to renovate the temple.

Significance of the Hanuman Mandir Temple

  • Delhi which is located on the banks of the Yamuna River is believed to be the Indraprastha city which was built by the Pandavas of the Mahabharata epic period.
  • Pandavas who ruled from Indraprastha lost their kingdom in a dice game to the Kauravas and were exiled for a 12-year term.
  • Hanuman who is considered to be the brother of Bhima as both of them are Vayu’s children, appeared in the     forest disguised as a weak and aged monkey.
  • Bhima who was searching for a fragrant flower as asked  by Draupadi, found Hanuman lying with his tail blocking his way and, unaware of Hanuman’s identity, scornfully asked him to remove his tail.
  • However, Hanuman told Bhima to lift the tail as he was too weak to do it.
  • Bhima tried hard several times but failed to lift it, in spite of being a man of great strength and it was then he     realized that the monkey was none other his own brother.
  • He apologized for his arrogant behavior and requested Hanuman to show him his true form.
  • Hanuman was then said to have enlarged himself and showed Bhima the size in which he had crossed the sea to  go to Lanka, looking for Sita during the Ramayana period.

After the Pandavas won the Kurukshetra war against the Kauravas and re–established themselves in Indraprastha, the Pandava clan is stated to have built five temples of Hanuman and other deities

Hanuman Mandir Timings

  •  Puja Timings: 5.00 am to 1.00 pm and 3.00 pm to 11.00 pm
  •  The temple is open for full day on Tuesday and Saturday.
  •  Tuesday and Saturday are considered to be special days of worship of Hanuman when devotees come to the         temple in large numbers.

Dress Code at Hanuman Mandir

Men and women are advised to wear decent clothing. The entry is free. People are supposed to leave their chappals and other footwear outside the temple while entering the holy sanctum.

Festivals Celebrated at the Hanuman Mandir

Hanuman Jayanti: The birthday celebrations of Lord Hanuman, is held every year with great pomp on the full moon (Purnima) day in the month of Chaitra (March – April) as per the lunar Hindu Panchangam or Hindu calendar. Colourful processions with festoons and with devotees wearing Hanuman masks and tails and carrying large idols of Hanuman fill the streets.

Poojas and Rituals at Hanuman Mandir

The daily pujas are carried out at all times of the day. Tuesdays and Saturdays are considered for worshipping Lord Hanuman, so there are a few special pujas carried out on these days.

How to Reach

By Road: Connaught Place’s Prachin Hanuman Mandir is well connected by bus and the Delhi Metro services. Besides, one can also rent a car or auto-rickshaw from anywhere to Connaught Place. Delhi Transport Department has added more buses to its fleet. Though the old buses are still in service, now you will find the green buses which are more comfortable to reach Connaught Place and Prachin Hanuman Mandir. Terminuses such as Kashmere Gate, Sarai Kale Khan, and Anand Vihar are located nearby which leads to various important places in the city.

By Rail: Almost all the metro trains in New Delhi passes through Connaught Place Hanuman Mandir Delhi. Whether one is coming from Noida, Gurgaon, India Gate, and the Airport or from the Delhi University area, they will find ample metro trains to reach the destination. Besides the Delhi Metro. Connaught Place metro station is the nearest metro station to Hanuman Mandir Delhi. Also, New Delhi Railway station is the nearest railway station to Prachin Hanuman Mandir. Connaught Place is located just minutes away from both the Old Delhi Railway Station as well as New Delhi Railway Station. Most travellers visiting Delhi, prefer staying in one of the hotels in Connaught Place because of its good connectivity to different parts of the city.

By Air: Delhi is well connected with domestic and international flights, to all the major cities within and outside India. Almost all the major airlines have their flights operating from Indira Gandhi International Airport of New Delhi. Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport is connected to all the important cities of the world with almost all the major international airlines operating from here.

Where to stay

Several 3-star and 5-star hotels are also available for pilgrims and tourists. Hotels namely The Park, The Connaught and Ram’s Inn are pretty popular among the tourists who come to visit regularly and are also located nearby.

Where to eat

Many lodges and hotels are present in the near proximity catering to different tastes. The kachoris available at the local shops are very famous. The temple’s neighbourhood is also famous for its clustered shops of bangles, kachoris, and kulfis. The Prasad served at the temple and its premises is made of pure desi ghee which altogether enamors the visiting crowd.

Nearby Temples

  • Kalkaji Mandir – Kalkaji Mandir is a famous Hindu temple dedicated to Hindu Goddess Kali. This temple is located in the southern part of Delhi, India, in Kalkaji, a locality which has derived its name from this famous temple and is located right opposite to the Nehru Place business centre. The temple is easily commutable by all forms of public transport. The belief surrounding the temple is that the image of the Goddess Kalka or Kali, here is a self-manifested one, and the shrine dates back to Satya Yuga when the Goddess Kalika had incarnated and killed the demon Raktabija along with other giant demons.
  • Chhatarpur Mandir –  The second largest temple complex in India which is dedicated to Goddess Katyayani, the sixth avatar of the Navadurga, who had slain the ferocious demon Mahishasur. The temple is famous for its Veesarra form of architecture and Navratra festivities which are celebrated with pomp and glory.
  • Mata Sheetala Mandir– Sheetala Mata Mandir which is located at Gurgaon village, a suburb of Gurgaon (Guru Dronacharya’s birth place), in the state of Haryana, is only 25 km from Hanuman Mandir. Sheetala Devi is also called as Bhagat Lalita Maa and Masani Maa. The word Sheetala refers to the disease smallpox and it is believed that if this deity is invoked with faith, she dispels the disease. Situated near a pond, this temple witnesses hordes of pilgrims throughout the year. During the month of Chaitra (March-April), this place resembles the grounds of Kumbh-Mela. Many devotees visit this place for the mundane ceremony of their children and also newly married couples who come to take blessings for a happy married life.

Iskcon Temple

Iskcon Temple, Delhi

‘Sri Sri Radha Parthasarathy Temple’ also known as ‘Hare Krishna Temple’ or the ‘Iskcon Temple’ built by The International Society for Krishna Consciousness – popularly known as ISKCON or ‘Hare Krishna Movement’ – belongs to the Gaudiya-Vaishnava sampradāya, one of the various traditions of the Hindu culture. Philosophically, this tradition is based on the Sanskrit texts Bhagavad-gītā, and the Bhagavat Purana or Srimad Bhagavatam. These historic texts fall under the ‘bhakti yoga’ tradition, literally meaning ‘devotional discipline’. They teach that the ultimate goal for all living beings is to reawaken their love for God, particularly God Krishna – the “all-attractive one”, through devotion, prayer, and meditation. Iskcon Temple was established in India in the year 1998 in Delhi.

One of the 40 temples built by the Society, it is situated in Sant Nagar area in south Delhi. Iskcon Temple has three shrines dedicated to Radha-Krishna, Sita-Ram, and Guara-Nitai. It has an air-conditioned hall that can accommodate as many as 1,500 people at a time. During the months of Saawan (July–August) and Kartik (October–November), the temple is decorated with fresh flowers. The air is thick with spiritual discourses and chants, enhancing the divine atmosphere, thus propagating the devotion to God.

ISKCON Temple complex consists of the Temple, Museum of Vedic Culture, Center for Vedic Studies, Vedic Center for the Performing Arts, Asrama, and Krishna Jayanti Park. ISKCON welcomes anybody and everybody from devotees to those who want to learn the essence of the Vedas.

Iskcon-New-Delhi-Sita-Rama-Laxman-Hanuman

Iskcon Temple History

  • ISKCON was first established in New York City by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda in 1966.
  • In India, in Delhi, it was established in 1988 by Gopala Krishna Goswami who served Srila Prabhupada in the States.
  • After several attempts to get land in Delhi, finally, in 1982 the government sanctioned land for the establishment of this “educational and cultural project.” The project was titled ‘Glory of India Vedic Cultural Center.’
  • Shri A.P.Khanvinde, the recipient of the Padma Shri in 1974, was the principal architect of ISKCON Delhi.
  • Since then, it has established itself as a great religious center of Hindus, especially the people of Vaishnava tradition and the devotees God Krishna.

Significance of the Iskcon Temple

  • The vision of the project is to create an institution that will inspire people to dedicate their lives to the teachings of God Sri Krishna. And in keeping with this theme, the Glory of India museum and exhibition present highlights from the ancient and medieval texts, such as Mahabharata, Ramayana, Srimad-Bhagavatam, and Caitanya-caritamrta.
  • Iskcon Temple architecture is a combination of the design of six-eight hundred-year-old temples and present day technology.
  • The purpose of ISKCON is to serveas a center for India’s greatest glory – Vedic knowledge and culture.
  • God is known across the world by many names including Allah, Jehovah, Yahweh, Rama, etc. ISKCON devotees chant God’s names in the form of the maha-mantra or the great prayer: “Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare; Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.”
  • Members of ISKCON practice bhakti-yoga in their homes and also worship in temples. They also promote bhakti-yoga, or Krishna Consciousness, through festivals, the performing arts, yoga seminars, public chanting, and the distribution of the society’s literature.

Poojas and Rituals of Iskcon Temple

  • Harinama Sankirtana – A procession of devotees are seen dancing and chanting the Harinama-sankirtana (the congregational chanting of the holy names of the God) on the streets, the maha-mantra “Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare; Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare” accompanied by Mridangas (two-headed drums) and Karatalas (hand cymbals).
  • Aratis – Arati at various specific times of the day with the chanting of the God’s name is offered to the deities in the presence and participation of the devotees daily.
  • Bhakti Yoga – ‘Bhakti’ means to offer themselves to God with love and devotion. The Sanskrit root of the word bhakti is bhaj, which means ‘loving service.’ ISKCON promotes ‘Mantra Mediation’ as one of the key practices of a bhakti yogi. This is done through japa (quiet chanting on beads) and kirtan (musical chanting of Hymns in groups). It is believed that the human being’s connection and relationship with Krishna are developed through the chanting of the maha-mantra; the chanting cleansing the heart, calming the mind, and inspiring a life of purpose and meaning.

Activities at Iskcon Temple

The Society believes in serving God through serving mankind. It organizes many programmes in this regard.

  • ‘Food for life’–Relief Programme – It is a free food distribution programme, which provides vegetarian meals for everyone. Every day ISKCON distributes prasad to more than seven thousand visitors. During Festivals and Sundays, it is distributed to around 10,000 people. ISKCON devotees and volunteers also go to old-age homes and orphanages to help the residents by distributing prasad. In addition to regular distribution in low-income areas, Food for Life has provided aid during several catastrophic emergencies worldwide.
  • Prison programmes – ISKCON has been tending to the spiritual needs of Prison inmates all over the world for over 30 years. A widely appreciated programme by the Prison officials and the inmates, this programme has helped transform the lives of many individuals. The ISKCON Prison Programmes in ‘Tihar Jail’ offer several services such as spiritual counseling and guidance, the Art of Mind control seminars, providing literature which teaches about living a holistic life, and Japa
  • Corporate Seminars – Through its corporate training wing V-SERVE, ISKCON Delhi reaches out to the professionals to help them in leading a better and holistic life. V-SERVE strives to bring ethics and spiritual values into the workplace with ‘Life Style Management Techniques’ and ‘Transformation in Consciousness through Behavioral Training’ seminars, workshops, and Experiential Learning which leads to:
  • Increased productivity.
  • Employee retention, interpersonal relationships and team bonding,
  • Role clarity and employee engagement.
  • Personal Management: Stress Management , Anger Management, Work-Life Balance
  • Relationship Management: Conflict Resolution, The Art of Delegation, Team Work, Effective Communication, Ethical Leadership
  • Inner-Self Management: Embracing Change, MAP – Mental Awarenes Program, Wellness, Morality

ISKCON members have also opened hospitals, schools, colleges, eco-villages, free food distribution projects, and other institutions as a practical application of the path of devotional yoga.

Special activities and projects such as dramas, exhibitions, workshops, community projects and cultural presentations — by volunteers — are shared with the community and the general public.

Festivals Celebrated at Iskcon Temple

Festivals are a vital part of community life at ISKCON Delhi, involving large numbers of volunteers.

  • Gaura Purnima – It is the appearance anniversary of God Chaitanya Mahaprabhu (1486-1534) who is Radha and Krishna combined. On this a full-moon day, everyone fasts till moonrise, and devotees visit the temple to see the Deities of the God. The devotees present dramas and lectures about Lord Chaitanya’s activities. The idols of Gaura-Nitai are adorned with new clothes, and the devotees engage in extra Kirtan (Hymns). At moonrise, a prasad feast (sanctified vegetarian food) is served.
  • Ramnavami – Ramnavami observes the birth of God Rama, and is one of the most auspicious days in the Vaisnava calendar. At ISKCON Delhi, celebrations include special decorations, drama, and discussion of God Rama’s pastimes and a ‘Hari Nama’ chanting procession in the surrounding areas. The day also includes Maha Abhishek, the drama by Vaikuntha Players, Lectures on God Rama, and a feast for all the devotees.
  • Sri Krishna Janmashtami – The auspicious day of the appearance of God Krishna is celebrated as Sri Krishna Janmashtami. ISKCON Delhi is reputed to celebrate one of the largest Janmashtami celebrations of its kind. The festivities last for 12 days beginning with a Srimad Bhagavat Katha for a week, followed by a Shobha yatra (procession outside the temple).
  • Radhashtami – It is the celebration day of Srimati Radharani’s appearance. Radharani is the consort of Krishna. She appeared to Vrishabhanu Maharaj (her father) in the village of Rawal, a fortnight after Krishna’s appearance. Radharani is the best devotee of Krishna; Krishna, therefore, loves her the most. On the festival day, devotees seeking Krishna’s grace will ask her to grant them devotion to her beloved God. On Radhastami, Sri Radha-Krishna idols are traditionally dressed entirely in flowers. Sri  Radha Parthasarathi is adorned in a new outfit in the morning and a flower outfit in the evening. Abhishek is performed at noon.
  • Jagannath Rath Yatra – The pulling of Rath (chariot) during the Rath-yatra procession by the devotees symbolizes the attempt of the residents of Vrindavan, especially the cowherd boys and girls, to bring Krishna, Balarama, and Subhadra back to Vrindavan, near Mathura, UP from Kurukshetra. ISKCON Delhi celebrates Rath yatra annually around October/November. The festivities include the Rath yatra parade, offering of Chappan bhoga (56 foodstuffs), spiritual discourses, and a spiritual and cultural festival.
  • Nauka Vihar (Boat Festival) – Every year in summer, the devotees at ISKCON Delhi celebrate the boat festival of their Gods. This festival is connected to the pastimes of God Krishna and Srimati Radharani, who along with their friends would enjoy boat rides on the river Yamuna in the summers. Devotees in the temple decorate the Kailya Krishna pond with a flower bed. The Gods are then requested to come down to the pond while being accompanied by sankirtan (Hymns). The idols are then taken around the pond on a boat while thousands of devotees shower flowers and chant the Gods’ name.

Iskcon Temple Timings

Iskcon Temple is open on all days of the week. The temple schedule is as follows

Programme Time
Mangala Arati 4.30am
Japa (Mantra) Meditation 5.15am
Darshan Arati 7.15am
Guru Pooja 7.30am
Srimad Bhagavatam Discourse 8.00am
Raj Bhog Arati 12.30pm
Usthapana Arati 4.15pm
Sandhya Arati 7.00pm
Bhagavad Gita Discourse 8.00pm
Sayana Arati 8.30pm
Temple Hall Closes 9.00pm

The main Iskcon Temple hall is closed between 1 pm and 4 pm.

Cafeteria: Lunch – 12.00pm to 3.30pm & Dinner – 7.00pm to 10.00pm

Where to Eat

The Society operates a Govinda’s cafeteria, serves pure vegetarian (Saatvik) meals which are first offered to God Krishna. It offers 18 varieties of preparations for lunch and dinner.

Where to Stay

ISKCON operates a guest house in the temple complex with cozy and well-ventilated rooms on one-month prior booking.

Also, there are several lodgings in Sant Nagar around the temple area.

How to Reach

Sant Nagar is an area in south Delhi which is very well connected with the rest of the city.

By Air: ISKCON Sant Nagar is 20 km from the New Delhi international airport and can be reached using pre-paid taxis, metro train, and DTC Shuttle buses all of which are available right at the arrival terminal.

By Train: Metro –The Nehru Place metro station is the closest to the temple and is just a 5-minute walk. The alternate option would be ‘Kailash Colony’ Station

Railways – ISKCON Sant Nagar is 5 km from the Nizamuddin railway station and 12 km from the New Delhi railway station. Both of them offer auto-rickshaws, taxi, public bus service and Metro train to commute.

By Road: Several state government run buses and taxis operate round the city which transports to Sant Nagar area.

Nearby Attractions

Delhi is a city with rich history housing several monuments and temples with great cultural and political significance. Below are some of the places which are nearby Sant Nagar.

  • Lotus Temple – Bahá’í Temple, popularly known as the Lotus Temple is a masterpiece of 20th-century architecture which was designed by Fariburz Sabha, a Canadian Bahá’í of Iranian descent. Built between 1980 and 1986, it is the latest among the seven Bahá’í temples across the world. Shaped akin to a half-open lotus, light and water have been used as fundamental elements of design of this house of worship. Set among sprawling green lawns, the petals of the grand lotus are surrounded by nine pools that represent floating leaves. The Lotus Temple is conducive to meditation. There are no priests, idols, pictures, sermons or rituals. Religious discrimination does not exist here as its symbol, the lotus, connotes peace, purity and a manifestation of God. It is open to all free of cost from 9am to 7pm, six days a week except for Mondays.
  • Kalkaji Temple – Built in the mid-18th century, Kalkaji temple/Mandir is a renowned temple dedicated to Kalka Devi or Goddess Kali. Certain changes and additions were made to the temple in mid-19th century by Raja Kedarnath, treasurer of Emperor Akbar II. The whole temple is built using white marble and granite. In the sanctum sanctorum is the stone that represents Goddess Kali, housed in a 12-sided structure. There are many Dharmashalas (rest houses) in the vicinity of the temple, built with donations of devotees. The temple is open to devotees from 6am to 10pm every day.
  • Jahanpanah – Jahanpanah was the fourth medieval city of Delhi established by Muhammad bin Tughlaq in AD 1326–27. The reminders of the city lie in Begumpuri Mosque and Bijay Mandal. Built by Khan-i-Jahan Junan Shah in the 12th century, Begumpuri Mosque was not just a place of worship, but also a social and communal hub. It was built almost entirely of a combination of grey Delhi quartzite and mortar, covered with lime plaster. Bijay Mandal was possibly the thousand-pillared palace of Muhammad bin Tughlaq. There is a huge wall standing on a large platform with a pavilion at the top. On one side of the structure is a dome-shaped building. One gets a spectacular view of the city from the top of the octagonal pavilion.
  • Moth ki Masjid – Also known as ‘Masjid Moth’ it was constructed in the early 16th century by Miyan Bhuwa, a minister during the rule of Sikandar Lodi. An exceptional amalgam of Hindu and Islamic styles, this type of Indo-Islamic architecture was developed in the Indian subcontinent subsequent to the advent of Muslim rule. According to legend, Miyan Bhuwa built this mosque from the revenue earned by producing a large crop from a single grain of moth (tepary bean) presented to him by Sikandar Lodi. Masjid Moth is different from traditional mosques as it does not have the typical minarets and calligraphic decorations. It is open to visitors daily from Sunrise to Sunset.

Yogmaya Temple

Yogmaya Temple – The Abode of Divine Powers and Shakti

One of the oldest and the ancient Hindu temple situated in the small village of Mehrauli is the ancient Yogmay Temple. Yogmaya temple is also known as the Jogmaya temple which is dedicated to Goddess Yogmaya, sister of Lord Krishna. It is located in New Delhi near the Qutub Complex, this shrine is believed to be amongst one of the five surviving temples from the Mahabharata period in the city. Mehrauli was the first capital of post-Rajput era and all the rulers ruled from here. This is one of the five temples dedicated to Yogmaya, other 4 being in Barmer, Jodhpur, Vrindavan and Multan. The deity is worshipped as the mother of all beings and is considered one of the personal powers of the divine.

Lord Krishna (who was born at midnight on Ashtami, in the Mathura King Kansa’s prison), as the eighth son of Vasudeva and Devaki, was replaced by a baby girl. Who was born at the same time to Nand and Yashoda in the village of Gokul across the Yamuna. As Vasudeva has exchanged the babies at the very night they were born; in the morning, the guards told Kansa that a baby has born in the night. Vasudeva exchanged the babies, he reached Krishna to Yashoda and brought Yogmaya from there to Devaki,in the jail. On hearing of the birth of the child, Kansa arrived at the prison to kill the infant. But the girl child slipped out of the hands of Kansa, as he was about to bang her head against the prison wall, and went up in the sky. There was an Akashvani (celestial broadcast), which said, ‘O foolish Kansa! Your slayer has been born and is safe in Gokul.’

The baby girl was goddess Yogmaya (divine illusion), according to Shvetashvatar Upnishad. God has many divine powers, such as knowledge, almightiness, action and his most important personal power called Yogmaya or ahladini shakti. The Gods derive power from their female companion. As Shiva is nothing without Shakti, so was Krishna without Yogmaya.

Yogmaya Temple

Yogmaya Temple History

  • According to history, Yogmaya Temple has been built by the Pandavas, at the end of Mahabharata. Mehrauli place is also named as Yoginipura after the temple in the 12th-century Jain scriptures. Mehr- auli is one of the seven ancient cities that make up the present state of Delhi. The temple was first renovated during the rule of Mughal Emperor Akbar II (1806–37) by Lala Sethmal.
  • It is also believed that Krishna and Arjun came to pray here during the Mahabharata war after Abhimanyuwas killed by Jayadrath. Arjun took a vow that he would kill him by next evening. Arjun and Krishna came to this temple to pray at such a time to ask for the blessing from the Goddess. With her magical powers or she created an illusionary eclipse that gave Arjuna the opportunity to kill Jayadrath.
  • This temple had been built in early 19th century and is regarded as an aspect of Maya, the illusionary power of God. The temple is located within the Lal Kot walls constructed by the Gurjar Tanwar chief Anangpal I around AD 731. It was later expanded by Anang Pal II in the 11th century.
  • This temple is said to be destroyed by Ghazni who was the most prominent ruler of the Ghaznavid Empire in the beginning and later it was again destroyed by Mamluks. The temple was renovated and reconstructed by Hemu, the Rajput king. The present structure of the temple was built in the early 19th century.
  • There are about 200 people who have been taking care of the Yogmaya temple voluntarily and amicably. It is believed that there had been one common ancestor at a point in time who, hundreds of years ago started the practice of taking care of the temple by offering prayers to the goddess, making and distributing prasad to the devotees, cleaning the temple and doing the shingar of the goddess yogmaya twice a day.

Significance of the Yogmaya Temple

  • The Deity of this temple is Goddess Yogmaya is called as the “Pure Goddess” which is made of black stone and was placed in a well, made of marble. The sanctum of Goddess Yogmaya is leaded with a Vimanam which is 42 feet and dome
  • Two small pankhas (fans) of the same materials are seen suspended over the Idol from the roof. The walled enclosure around the temple is 400 ft (121.9 m) square, with towers at the four corners. Twenty-two towers were built within the temple at the orders of the Sood Mal, the builder.
  • In the past, there was an iron cage of 8 ft (2.4 m) square and10 ft (3.0 m) in height in which two stone tigers are exhibited. Now the cage is been placed in the open wall panel. There is a table of 18 inches square and 9 inches height set in front of the idol in the sanctum floor where the devotees offer flowers and their offerings.
  • In this temple, the Shivalinga is placed slightly above the level at which Goddess is placed. As Goddess is Shakti and Shiva is always above Shakti.

Yogmaya Temple Timings

The temple remains open from morning 06.00 AM till 08.00 PM in the night. It remains open for all days of the week and the entry to the temple and puja that is performed is free.

Festivals celebrated at the Yogmaya Temple

Phoolwalon-ki-sair Festival : It is a festival of flowers which is celebrated in surrounding areas of Mehrauli like Qutub Sahib’s dargah and Yogmaya temple. The other activities that happen during the festival are kite flying, wrestling matches, qawalis and much more. The reigning Mughal emperor Akbar Shah II wanted to nominate his younger son Mirza Jahangir as his heir, for he wasn’t happy with his eldest son Siraj Uddin Zafar. This decision was opposed by the then British Resident, Sir Archibald Seton. Mirza Jahangir insulted Seton publicly and fired at him. The Resident instantly issued orders for Mirza to be exiled to Allahabad. The distressed Queen vowed to offer a chadar of flowers at the dargah of Khwaja Bakhtiar ‘Kaki’ at Mehrauli if her son was released. Two years later, when Mirza Jahangir was released, the Begum went to Mehrauli to fulfil her vow, accompanied by the imperial court and the entire population of Delhi. A 7-day mela ensued, with swings hung in the mango groves, cock and bull fights, wrestling, kite-flying and swimming contests. The secular-minded Mughal emperor also ordered for a floral pankha to be offered at the nearby Yogmaya Temple. The festivities are followed by cultural programmes with enthralling Kathak performances, Qawwalis, and devotional songs which are celebrated by both Hindus as well as Muslims.

Mahashivratri – It is the festival that is celebrated on February/March. Maha Shivratri is a Hindu festival which is celebrated by people following Hinduism in India. People often fast on the night of Shivratri and sing hymns and praises in the name of Lord Shiva. Hindu temples across the country are decorated with lights and colorful decorations and people can be seen offering night long prayers to Shiva Lingam.

Navaratri Festival – This festival is observed twice a year, once in the beginning of summer and again at the onset of winter.Navaratri is divided into sets of three days to adore different aspects of the supreme goddess. During Navaratri, devotees invoke the energy aspect of God in the form of the universal mother, commonly referred to as Durga. Different devotees all over the country gather at the temple to celebrate it and there are different major events conducted.

Poojas and Rituals at Yogmaya temple

The major ritual consists of offering and bathing the idol (Mata Snanam) with milk followed by an Aarti every morning and evening. This, in turn, is followed by hymn recitation. Offerings can be purchased just before the entrance of the temple. Visitors should be alert in the area as the place is very crowded.

There are special events and poojas that are performed on special festivals. There are some special poojas that are performed on the Navaratri festival and they are:

Mahashashthi – The sixth day of Navaratri is celebrated as Durga Sasthi or Maha Sasthi. On Sasthi Katyani Puja is observed as part of NavaDurga Puja in Shaktheya Samprdaya.Unveiling the face of the idol of Goddess is the main ritual on this day.

Mahasaptami – Mahasaptami is the seventh day of the waxing phase of the moon. Maha means great and saptami means the seventh day. On this day worshiping nine types of plants is the symbol of the goddess.

Mahaastami – Mahashtami, also known as Maha Durgashtami, is the second day of Durga Puja. Maha Ashtami is one of the most important days of Durga Puja. Devotees sing different hymns in sanskrit language and offering worship to the goddess.

Mahanavami – Maha Navami is observed on the ninth day of the Shukla Paksha (waxing phase of moon) of Ashwin month. It is the ninth and the final day of nine-day Navratri Festival. Mahanavami is also the penultimate day of Durga Puja. The Navami Bhog is offered to the goddess and offered as Prasad to the devotees.

How to reach: Road, Rail, and Air

By Metro: The nearest metro station is Saket, Chattarpur and Malviya nagar.

By Air: Indira Gandhi International airport is the nearest airport to Yogmaya Railway station, New Delhi which is 24 Km away from Yogmaya Temple.

By Train: The nearest railway station to Yogmaya Temple is Delhi railway station which is 10 Km away from Yogmaya Temple.

By Road: Roads are well maintained in Delhi, so one can easily ride through cabs or can travel through there own vehicle. The state belongs to Delhi Transport Corporation buses connect all the junctions in Delhi. Numerous super deluxe A/C motor coaches run from New Delhi . State government operates bus services from Delhi to all the neighboring cities. Bus transportation service within the city is also affordable.

Hotels in Yogmaya: Where to stay

There are many hotels available to stay near the Yogmaya temple. Some of them are:

  • Clarion Collection: Qutab Institutional Area, Shaheed Jeet Singh Marg, New Delhi 110016, India
  • The Vishraam: Plot No.1 Khasra 262 West End Marg , M.B. Road, | Lane No. 4, Said-ul-Azaib,New Delhi 110030, India (Formerly Amanotel)
  • Silver Ferns Hotel: 31-32, Community Centre Saket | Saket, New Delhi 110017, India
  • Hotel Pluto’s: Aruna Asaf Ali Road | Opposite Sector B, Pocket 4, New Delhi 110070, India
  • Stay Inn Group Of Apartments: D6/6151/1, Ground Floor, Vasant Kunj | Vasant Kunj, New Delhi 110070, India
  • Sage Hotel: 4 Navjeevan Vihar, New Delhi 110017, India
  • ISKCON Guest House: Hare Krishna Hill, Sant Nagar, East of Kailash, New Delhi 110065, India
  • Iris Hotel: F-19, Deshbandhu College Road | Kalkaji, New Delhi 110019, India
  • Hotel Flic Flac India: 249-A, Main Road, Sant Nagar, East of Kailash, New Delhi 110065, India
  • Hotel Swagath: C-8, Malviya Nagar, New Delhi 110017, India

Nearby Temples

Shree Adya Katyayani Shaktipeeth Mandir

It is also known as Shree Adya Katyayani Shaktipeeth Mandir is dedicated to Katyayani Mata, the 6th Form of Nav Durga. Within the walls of the Chattarpur Temple complex, one can visit 20 different types of temple devoted to Indian gods and goddesses in various forms such as Goddess Laxmi, Lord Krishna, Lord Shiva and Lord Ganesha. The main attraction of Chhatarpur Temple is the golden image of Maa Katyayani and two rooms dedicated to Maa Katyayani.

Jagannath Temple

The Deities, Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra, Subhadra and Chakra Sudarshan are made of margosa wood.The Jagannath temple at Hauz Khas is the centre of cultural conglomeration for Oriyas in Delhi.The idols worshipped here are of Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra (brother of lord Jagannath), Maa Subhadra (sister of lord Jagannath) & Sudarshan chakra.  It is around 1.5 Kms from the Green Park Metro Station near the Sarvodaya School.

Shri Digambar Jain Lal Mandir

Shri Digambar Jain Lal Mandir is oldest jain temple in old Delhi.It is situated right opposite the Red Fort, at the entrance of the main road. Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan (1628-1658) once invited several Jain seth to come and settle in the city and granted them some land south of the Chandani Chauk around Dariba Gali. He also permitted them to build a temporary structure to house a Jain temple. The main idol is that of Tirthankara Parshva.This temple has undergone many alterations and additions in the past and was enlarged in the early 19th century.

Chittaranjan Park Kali Mandir

Chittaranjan Park Kali Mandir, Delhi

Chittaranjan Park Kali Mandir or CR Park Mandir is situated in the Bengali-dominated locality, CR park of south Delhi. It was founded in 1973, first as a small temple shrine for God Shiva. It was soon added with Goddess Kali and was later – by late 1980s – developed into what is today’s CR Park Mandir complex that hosts three shrines devoted to God Shiva, Goddess Kali, and Radha-Krishna. A modern age temple, the architecture, during its expansion in the 1980s, took the form of Bengal terracotta temple art. It has grown into a cultural and traditional hub of Bengalis in Delhi. As Bengalis are synonymous to the grandeur celebrations of Durga pooja, the tradition of celebrating the pooja at this temple began in the late 1970s.

Situated on a small hill top, the mandir is known for its calm and serenity within the hustle – bustle of Delhi. It is surrounded by a vast garden which was declared as the ‘Best Kept Garden’ by Agri-Horticulture Society in 1999. The mandir complex also houses halls for cultural functions and discourses, and spaces crafted to accommodate festivals like Durga Puja, library, tirthashram, homeopathy, naturopathy yoga centres, children’s park, and a musical fountain.

The mandir maintains a Charitable ‘Balanada’ Dharmashala, viz., ‘Yatri Niwas’ – meaning a ‘Traveller’s Home’, and a canteen.  Any visitor to the city is welcome here, and would be accommodated for a maximum of seven days at a nominal price.

CR Park 2

CR Park History

  • A resolution to build a temple was taken in 1973 by the residents of CR Park, and a steering committee, ‘Chittaranjan Park Kali Mandir Society’ was formed.  A proposal for the construction of a temple within two acres lands on the ‘Rock Garden’ was sent to the government in 1974.
  • On 25th April 1974 on the eve of ‘Akshay Tritiya’, a Shivlinga was installed in a temporary shed.
  • Foundation of Kali Mandir was laid in 1979, and the idol of Goddess Kali was established on 21st February 1985.
  • The Radha-Krishna establishment and temple inauguration was conducted in February 1994.
  • The terracotta ar
  • The Musical Fountain in the mandir complex was inaugurated by Dr. Anita Bose, daughter of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose in February 2013.

Significance of the CR Park

  • In 1947, during the India – Pakistan partition, the state of Bengal separated into two entities – East Bengal in Pakistan and West Bengal in India. A large group of government employees who was a refugee of East Bengal migrated to Delhi. Forming East Pakistan Displaced Persons (EPDP) Association, they lobbied for a residential colony in 1954.
  • In 1967, the 218-acre barren rocky land was assigned to the applicants with refugee status. 2147 people with the status were given plots in the area now known as Chittaranjan Park or CR Park.
  • The colony was founded with plots going exclusively to migrants from East Bengal; but over time, it attracted general Bengali settlers resulting in demographic diversification.
  • The residents of CR Park founded and established the Chittaranjan Park Kali Mandir by 1980s.
  • The Kali Mandir soon grew into a traditional hub of all the Bengalis in Delhi with various religious and cultural activities all round the year.
  • Durga pooja is celebrated, during Durgashtami, at the mandir annually; with barrels of Bengal-specific flowers, such as Shuli (night flowering jasmine) and blue-lotus, flown in fresh for pooja everyday, and includes a typical Bengali cuisine, bhog.

CR Park Temple Timings

Due to the extreme variation of temperature in Delhi, the mandir timings change according to the season.

Summer (April – October): 4.45am – 12.30pm & 5.00pm – 10.00pm

Winter (November – March): 5.45am – 1.00pm & 4.30pm – 9.00pm

Everyday Arati timings are as follows:

Arati Summer Winter
  (April – October) (November – March)
Mangal Arati 4.45am – 5.15am 5.45am – 6.15am
Puja 8.00am 8.30am
Bhog Arati 11.20am – 11.50am 11.20am – 11.50am
Sandhyarati 6.30pm – 7.30pm 6.00pm – 7.00pm

 

Musical Fountain Timings

Tuesday – Sunday: 7.00pm – 7.15pm (after Sandhyarati. No show on Mondays)

Poojas and Rituals at CR Park Mandir

Regardless of any particular ritual or pooja, this shrine is an emblem of great fidelity. Various customary Bengali poojas are offered to the Gods on special occasions.

  • Bipattarini Pooja – The Bipattarini Pooja/Vrata is observed by women on the Panchami, fifth day of the Shukla paksha(waxing moon) in the month of Ashadha according to the Hindu calendar, in order to overcome troubles. Bipattarini is an avatar of Goddess Durga. Legends established her name, Bipada – Tarini, which literally means ‘deliverer from troubles’.
  • Jagadhatri Pooja – ‘Jagadhatri’ is the ‘Protector of the World’. She is celebrated on Gosthastami. It is also referred to as another Durga Pooja as it also starts on Asthami tithi and ends on Dashami tithi. The date of the pooja is decided by the luni-solar Hindu calendar.
  • Satyanarayan Pooja – It is done on special occasions and during times of achievements as an offering of gratitude to God Vishnu.
  • Shani Pooja – Shani Pooja is performed to appease planet Saturn; it is sought for mental peace and to get rid of various diseases.
  • Shradh Ceremony – ‘Shraddha’is a Sanskrit word meaning anything or any act that is performed with all sincerity and faith. Shradh Ceremony is a ritual that one performs to pay homage to one’s ancestors, especially to one’s dead parents.
  • Til Tarpan – It is a specific form of Tarpan (offering made to divine entities) involving libationsoffered to the Pitrs (deceased ancestors) using water and sesame (Til) seeds during a death rite.

The mandir also celebrates Kali Mandir Pratistha Diwas, Shiv Mandir Pratistha Diwas, and Radha Krishna Mandir Pratistha Diwas to commemorate the mandirs’ installations.

Mandir also assists devotees in conducting personal obeisance.

Hari Sabha and Ladies regularly conduct Sankirtan and evening Kirtan (devotional songs), at the three temple shrines.

Festivals Celebrated at CR Park Mandir

  • Durga Pooja – Durga Pooja festival marks the victory of Goddess Durga over the evil buffalo demon Mahishasura. Celebrated all over India, it is the biggest festival of the year for Bengali Hindus.
  • Maha Shivratri – It is a festival celebrated annually in reverence of the God Shiva. Shivratri is celebrated during the night by keeping a “jaagaran” – a night-long vigil with worship, as it is believed that God Shiva saved the universe from darkness and ignorance.
  • Ram Navami – It is a festival celebrating the birth of the god Ramato King Dasharatha and Queen Kausalya in Ayodhya.
  • Neel Sashti – It is the day in the Bengali month of Chaitra when Bengalis celebrate the marriage of Lord Shiva with Devi Parvati by offering puja to the Lord.
  • Holi Milan – It is a spring festival, also known as the festival of colours or the festival of sharing the love.

Activities

Apart from the religious activities, CR Park Kali Mandir Society conducts and organizes many sports, cultural, developmental, and social activities throughout the year. They accept donations, whatever amount they may be, and use the amount for the service of God and mankind.

Sports & Cultural Activities

The ‘Chittaranjan Park Mandir Society’ actively promotes cultural and sports events.

  • As a part of cultural events, it celebrates Naba Barsha (Bengali Poila Baisakh/ New Year), birth anniversaries Bengali dignitaries such as Rabindranath Tagore, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar, Rishi Aurobindo, Thakur Sri Sri Maa Sarada, Swami Vivekananda and Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose.
  • Arranges exchange of Cultural Artists from different states and region for varieties of the programme.
  • Arranges four days cultural programmes by selected artists during Durga Pooja.
  • Emphases are given more on local talents for their exposure. Similar programmes are also arranged by the prominent artist on other public pooja days.
  • Organises Children’s day in the month of January. The programme is for the children and by the children. A platform is provided for them to expose their hidden talents. The programme is conducted by children themselves.
  • Netaji Subhash hall is set to organise regular religious discourses by different religious and philanthropic organisations.
  • Cultural Division felicitated to Bengali dignitaries, who have excelled in different fields, every year as “Gunijan”
  • Organizes Annual Sports in January every year.

Social Activities

The CR Park Mandir Society exhibits tremendous socio-economic values through their charitable and social events.

  • Running free Homeopathy and Naturopathy Dispensaries
  • Running Free Reading Room and Library. About 5000 books covering all sections are stacked in the library. There is a special section for the children. A good number of Magazines and News Papers are subscribed on a regular basis.
  • Running free Yoga Centre
  • Assisting students from Under-privileged section in meeting their educational expenses
  • Organizes free Bengali Learning Classes every week
  • Assisting the patients from down-trodden sections towards their medical expenses
  • Assisting the senior citizens who are staying alone in the colony, in case, they suddenly fall ill or otherwise.
  • Facilitate the citizens to meet together in the Mandir Prangan everyday for the exchange of views and pleasantries.
  • Making donations to Religious Organization for the pursuit of their religious activities.
  • Organizing “Daridra Narayan Sewa” once a month.

Where to eat

The mandir hosts a canteen, attached to the Dharmashala, which provides both veg & non-veg cuisines at nominal rates.

For the food savvies, Chittaranjan Park area houses a variety of traditional Bengali veg & non-veg cuisine (it is home to one of the city’s main markets for freshwater fish, an important part of Bengali Cuisine).

Where to Stay

The ‘Yatri Niwas’, a charitable Dharmashala, has 30 double bedded rooms with attached bathrooms. Common hot water during winter, and room coolers during summer are provided by the Dharmashala. It accommodates any visitor of the city for a maximum of seven days at a nominal price with a two-month advance booking.

There are also several hotels and lodges in and around CR Park area which provide good accommodation options, with several markets nearby.

How to reach

CR Park is an area in south Delhi which is very well connected with the rest of the city.

By Air: Indira Gandhi International Airport is the official airport of Delhi, and is around 15.2km from CR Park Kali Mandir.

By Rail: Delhi Junction Railway station is the major rail station of Delhi. It also has full-fledged metro rail system also operating within the city.

The nearest metro station is Nehru place metro station, 2 km from CR Park guest house.

By Road: Several state government run buses and taxis operate round the city which transports to CR Park area.

Nearby Temples

Delhi is a city with rich history housing several monuments and temples with great cultural and political significance. Below are some of the places which are nearby CR Park.

  • Kalkaji Temple – Built in the mid-18th century, Kalkaji temple/Mandir is a renowned temple dedicated to Kalka Devi or Goddess Kali. Certain changes and additions were made to the temple in mid-19th century by Raja Kedarnath, treasurer of Emperor Akbar II. The whole temple is built using white marble and granite. In the sanctum sanctorum is the stone that represents Goddess Kali, housed in a 12-sided structure. There are many Dharmashalas (rest houses) in the vicinity of the temple, built with donations from devotees. The temple is open to devotees from 6 am to 10 pm every day.
  • Lotus Temple – Bahá’í Temple, popularly known as the Lotus Temple is a masterpiece of 20th-century architecture which was designed by Fariburz Sabha, a Canadian Bahá’í of Iranian descent. Built between 1980 and 1986, it is the latest among the seven Bahá’í temples across the world. Shaped akin to a half-open lotus, light and water have been used as fundamental elements of design of this house of worship. Set among sprawling green lawns, the petals of the grand lotus are surrounded by nine pools that represent floating leaves. The Lotus Temple is conducive to meditation. There are no priests, idols, pictures, sermons or rituals. Religious discrimination does not exist here as its symbol, the lotus, connotes peace, purity and a manifestation of God. It is open to all free of cost from 9 am to 7 pm, six days a week except for Mondays.
  • ISKCON Temple – Built in 1998, ISKCON Temple is one of the 40 temples built by the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON). The actual name of the temple is Sri Radha Parthasarthy Temple, popularly known as Hare Krishna Temple. It has three shrines dedicated to Radha–Krishna, Sita–Ram and Guara–Nitai. Decorated beautifully with fresh flowers, the air is thick with spiritual discourses and chants, enhancing the divine atmosphere. Multimedia shows are organized regularly to educate the devotees about the Hindu epics. One can savour a delicious Saatvik (pure vegetarian) meal at ‘Govinda’, the temple cafeteria. It is open daily from 4.30am to 1 pm and from 4.30pm to 9 pm.

Chattarpur Mandir

Chattarpur Mandir- Abode of Shree Adya Katyayani

Shri Adhya Katyani Shakti Peeth Mandir or the Chattarpur Mandir is situated in Delhi. It was constructed in 1974 under the tutelage of Baba Sant Nagpal Ji, its founder. The temple follows a magnificent blend of Northern and Southern styles of architecture. It is located just 4 km away from Qutub Minar in the Mehrauli area of South Delhi.

Chattarpur Mandir is devoted to Goddess Katyayani, the sixth of the nine avatars of Goddess Durga generally referred to as the Navadurga. Katyayani, as the legends reveal, is the avatar which manifested into Mahishasurmardini, the avatar which had slain the fierce Rakshasa, Mahishasur.  The primary shrine houses the Goddess. Apart from the main shrine, there is the Shayankaksh (bedroom) which comprises of a bed, dining table with nine chairs and a dressing table, all of which is made out of pure silver.

The Chattarpur Mandir is spread over 70 acres of sprawling greens and comprises over 20 small and large temples which are divided into three different complexes. Several other temples devoted include the Shiv Mandir, Ram Mandir, Maa Katyayani Mandir, Maa Mahishasur Mardini Mandir, Maa Ashtabhuja Mandir, Hanuman Mandir, Laxmi Vinayak Mandir, Jharpeer Mandir, Markandeya Mandapam, Baba Ki Samadhi, Nageshwar Mandir, the Trident (Trishul), 101 feet high Hanuman Murti which form the special attractions of the place. There is also a museum devoted to the late saint which is a tourist attraction.

The stunning white marble architecture with serene surroundings makes the Chattarpur Mandir all the more divine and admirable. Thousands of devotees of all castes and religions flock together at the temple every single day. The lungar which is served on special occasions of the two Navratras, Janmashtami and Mahashivaratri to the devotees, is one of the largest in the world with approximately 1 lakh devotees joining in every year.

Run by the Sree Adya Katyayani Shaktipeeth Mandir Trust, the temple also regularly donates to several social causes and charities.

chattarpur mandir 2

Chattarpur Mandir History

  • As per the puranas, there was a sage name Katyaya who after meditation and rigorous penance was granted the boon to be the father of Maa Durga, whom he prayed to.
  • Goddess Durga was sent to earth by the Trideva: Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh to be born as Katyaya’s daughter Katyayani.
  • The temple was founded by Baba Sant Nagpal Ji who was born in Karnataka. He lost his mother at a very young age and it was during her cremation, did an unknown lady come and give him shelter who called herself as the mother of the universe and took him under her wing.

Significance of the Chattarpur Mandir

  • The sixth avatar of Durga, Katyayani was the one who slayed the evil demon Mahishasur, who had wreaked a havoc to all the three lokas.
  • This form of the Goddess came to be known as the Mahishasurmardini, the destructor of Mahishasur.
  • A manifestation of Shakti, the Goddess as visualized, carries 10 weapons in her 10 arms, to destroy all the evil in the world. She is represented by fiery expressions and a long flowing hair.
  • The ailing devotees tie a thread or a bangle to the Kalpavriksha tree located inside the premises of the temple, which according to legends grant their wishes. It is believed that once the wish is fulfilled, the devotee must come back and untie the thread.

Chattarpur Mandir Timings

  • Chattarpur Mandir opens around 4 am and closes at 11 pm.
  • The daily rituals encompass the morning aarti which happens at 4 am and the evening aarti.
  • Devotees can drop in anytime for worship.

Dress Code at Chattarpur Mandir

Men and women are advised to wear decent clothing. Short dresses and inappropriate pieces of apparel are strictly prohibited. It is mandatory to take off one’s shoes and wash his hands and feet.

Festivals Celebrated at Chattarpur Mandir

  • Navratra Celebrations- Both the Vasant Chaitra Navratras (New year of the Hindu Calendar) in March/April which is celebrated on the occasion of the birthday of Lord Rama and the Sharad Navratras, coinciding with Durga Pooja, are celebrated in September/October that culminates into Vijay Dasami when Shri Rama along with Sita and Lakshmana returned to Ayodhya after completion of 14 years exile, are celebrated with pomp and glory inside the temple premises. The celebrations start with Kumbhabhishek i.e. holy bath of Maa Katyayani a few days before the start of the Navratras. The mandir is open round the clock during Navratras.
  • Mahashivratri- Celebrated every year in the temple on the 14th day of the Hindu month of Fagun (February-March) as the marriage day of Lord Shiva and Maa Parvathi.
  • Krishna Janmashtami- It is celebrated on the Bhadrapad Ashtami (8th day) of the Hindu month of Bhadon (August/September). At midnight, Vishnu Sahasranam is recited in the temple followed by aarti, and prasad distribution.
  • Guru Purnima- Guru Purnima in August every year. A procession is carried out which starts around 10.00 am from Shree Shiv Shakti Mandir, Kilokari village, which after travelling a distance of 20 kms terminates around 2 pm at Babaji’s Samadhi in the main temple complex at Chhattarpur.
  • Babaji’s Birthday- The day is celebrated on the full moon day in February/March i.e. in the Hindu month of Fagun. All the devotees play Holi at the Markandeya Hall which is followed by lunch. Cultural and religious programmes are also held during the day.
  • Babaji’s Nirvaan Divas- Babaji attained Samadhi on 15th December 1998. The Samadhi is decorated with flowers and illuminated with lights on the day. Abhishek of Babaji’s statue is perfomed. Bhajans Free lungar (food, fruits etc) is arranged for all the invited saints. Woolen clothing, blankets, shawls etc are also given to them.

Poojas and Rituals at Chattarpur Mandir

The daily pujas are carried out at all times of the day. Special pujas such as the Kumbhabhishek and Guru Purnima processions are specifically done during Navratras and Guru Purnima.

How to Reach

  • By Air- The nearest airport is the Indira Gandhi International Airport at Delhi which is connected to all the major cities across the world
  • By Rail- There are direct trains from Delhi connecting over the entire length and breadth of India. There are trains which connect major cities like Mumbai, Kolkata, Lucknow etc.
  • By Road-Well connected roads with buses available across three inter-state bus terminuses namely Kashmere Gate, Anand Vihar and Sarai Kale Khan connect many important cities in India.

Where to stay

The temple owns a Dharamshala which houses devotees who come there for a short stay. The Dharamshala has 12 halls with a capacity of 30 people each and 36 rooms with a capacity of 6 people each.

Nearby, several hotels are also available for pilgrims and tourists.

Where to eat

The devotees visiting the temple generally eat at the temple during the lungars. Many lodges and hotels are also present in the near proximity catering to different tastes.

Nearby Temples

  • Bala Hanuman temple– A beautiful temple located near the Connaught Place. This temple has earned itself a name in the Guiness Book of Records for the 24-hour chanting of the “Sri Ram, Jai Ram” slogan since August 1964.
  • Gauri- Shankar temple– One of the holiest Shiva temples of Delhi, the temple is famous for its 800-year-old lingam.
  • Aurobindo Ashram– A centre of yoga and meditation which is located at the Aurobindo Marg.
  • Digambara Jain temple– Considered to be the oldest Jain temple, it was built in 1526. The main shrine houses the twenty-third Tirthankara, Parshvanath.

Kalkaji Mandir

Kalkaji Mandir

There are many places where one can visit in Delhi. There can be a shortage of time but there can never be a shortage of places. From monuments to the zoo, museums to shopping malls. There are various Temples which one should visit. Visiting temples make one mind peaceful and rejuvenating. One of them is Kalkaji Temple which is located in South Delhi. Kalkaji Mandir is a very famous tourist destination. People from all over the country come here to offer prayer and seek blessings.

Kalkaji Temple is one of the oldest temples. Kalkaji Mandir is dedicated to Maa Kalka, an avatar of Goddess Durga. This temple is also known as “Jayanti Peetha” or “Manokamana Sidha Peeta”. So it is believed to be the holy shrine where Maa Kalika Devi gives blessings so that one can fulfill one’s desire and wish. Kalkaji Temple is a highly respected Hindu Temple and is famous among Hindus. This temple is one of the major tourist attraction of Delhi. This temple is always crowded with people but the apex time is during Navratra. During Navratras, the temple is all decked up like a bride and followers from all over the world come here to seek blessings and offer prayers. Kalkaji Temple is very much crowded during this time of year. As Navratras take place twice in a year, both the time a large number of devotees come here to worship Goddess Kalka Devi.

Kalkaji Mandir 2

Kalkaji Mandir History

  • Built in 1764, legends say that Pandavs and Kauravs came here to worship. It was the treasurer of Emperor Akbar Second, Raja Kadarnath who made changes in the mid 19th century. It was by the contributions of devotees that the present structure was built. The new structure was built in the 20th century.
  • The story behind Maa Kalika Devi is that many years ago, the gods who lived near the present temple were troubled by two demons. As a result, gods went to Lord Brahma to save them. Lord Brahmais considered being the Lord of all the gods.
  • Lord Brahma refused to interfere in the matter but also referred Goddess Parvati. It was Kaushki Devi who sprung out of Goddess Parvati, who slaughtered the demons. But because their blood fell on the barren land, thousands of other demons came into life. This battle was alone fought by Kaushki Devi.
  • Out of the eyebrows of Kalika Devi came Maa Kali whose lower lip touched the sky. She drank the blood of all the slaughtered demons which poured out from their wound. Tis has how Kali Devi won the battle against the great odds.
  • It is believed that Kalka Ji Temple has a very ancient origin. But it is said that the oldest portion of the present building was not constructed earlier than 1764 A.D.
  • Legends say that hundred years ago Baba Balak Nath of Nath Sampradaya visited this holy place and had Kalka Devi’s darshan. After which the Goddess asked him to stay there and construct a temple. That temple got ruined after the passage of time.
  • It is also said that Goddess Kalka took the form of Maa Kali to kill the demon Raktabija. It is said that the shrines of Goddess Kali are self-manifested. This happened in Satyug era.

 Significance of the Kalkaji Mandir

  • People from all over the country come here to offer prayer to the Goddess Kalika Devi. This temple is always crowded with devotees but the apex point is during the festival Navratri.
  • This temple is surrounded by pyramidal towers. It is constructed of the bricks, finished with plasters and then marbles. The Central Chamber is 12 sided and there are 36 arched opening in the temple.
  • There is a doorway on each side. Each doorway is surrounded by the verandah. This verandah is 8’9” wide which contains 36 arched openings. The verandah is enclosed with the Central Chamber on all the sides.
  • There two red sandstone tigers sitting on a marble pedestal opposite the eastern doorway. The subscription article is Urdu. Between the tigers there is an idol of Kaali Devi with the name engraved on it in Hindi.
  • Visitors should be alert while visiting temple as the temple is always crowded and there can be the presence of lots of pickpockets.
  • This temple is made up of marble and black pumic stones. The black stone inside the structure represents Maa Kali.
  • It is said that Kalkaji Mandir has its existence from the very first yuga. It is believed that this temple has survived all the four yugas: The Satya Yuga, The Treta Yuga, The Dvapara Yuga and the Kali Yuga.

Poojas and Rituals at Kalkaji Mandir

  • Each day the Goddess’s idol is bathed with milk and is followed by Arti. Arti is done two a day: 6 am in the morning and 7:30 pm in the evening.
  • There are many stalls outside the Mandir where devotees can easily purchase offerings. There are various packages provided by these stalls. If a devotee needs only Agarbatti and nariyal for prayer he can take it and if he wants to buy an extensive package he can buy that too.
  • Devotees attend this temple throughout the year but it is more crowded during Navratras. Devotees from all over the country come here to offer prayer and seek Goddess Kalka Devi’s blessings.
  • Pujari’s performed archana and rituals on the turn by turn basis.
  • Tantric arti is held in the evening. Devotees meditate here as the atmosphere is very airy and bright with the light.
  • During the reign of Yudishthir, it is said that the Pandavas and the Kauravas worshiped Goddess Kalka in this Temple. It is also said that there is only a part of the temple left at present and the original temple destroyed with the passage of time.

Kalkaji Mandir Timings

  • Kalkaji Mandir is opened at 4 am for the devotees. The Goddess’s idol is bathed.
  • The closing time for the Temple is 11:30 pm. The temple is closed after the arti is done. The Temple is closed with the regular ritual which the Pujari’s perform.
  • During winter, the morning part starts from 6 am to 7:30 am ad during summer, the morning arti starts from 5 am to 6:30 am.
  • During winter, the evening part starts from 6:30 pm to 8 pm and during summer, the evening arti takes place from 7 pm to 8:30 pm. The actual timing may vary as it depends on the Pujari’s.
  • The temple remains closed during 11:30 am to 12 pm for offering prasad to the deity Maa Kalka Devi
  • From 3 pm to 4 pm, the Mandir is again closed for cleaning purposes. The devotees are not allowed to enter during this time.

Festivals celebrated at the Kalkaji Mandir

  • Chaitra Navratri– According to the Hindu Calender, Chaitra Navratri is celebrated on the first day of the calender. This festival is celebrated from 1st to 9th day of Chaitra month Shukla Paksh. The 9th day is celebrated as Ram Navami which is Lord Ram’s birthday.
  • Vasanta Navratri– This festival is celebrated in Autum this is why it is called Vasant Navratri. Vasant means Autum in Hindi. Vasant Navratri usually falls in the month of April but it may differ according to the Hindu Calender.
  • Maha Navratri– This festival is very famous and this is why it is celebrated across India. Maha Navratri is celebrated equally important as other festivals in Chhattisgarh. There is a lot of crowd in temples on this festival. People come from various parts to offer prayer.

There are many other festivals that are celebrated in the Kalkaji Temple. There are festivals like Diwali, holi, Mahashivratri, Purnima festival, Vijaydashmi, Durga Puja followed by Mahashashthi, Mahasaptami, Mahaashthami, and Mahanavami etc. But Navratra is the only festival which is celebrated twice a year but with equal importance. Navratra is celerated in West Bengal by the name Durga Puja. Durga Puja is celebrated equally importantly as Navratra.

How to reach: Road, Rail, and Air

  • By Air– The nearest airport to the Kalkaji Mandir is Indira Gandhi Airport, New Delhi. This airport is 15km away from Kalkaji Temple.
  • By Rail– The nearest railway station to Kalkaji Temple is H Nizamuddin Railway Station which is 4km away from the Temple.
  • By Road– One can take any regular bus. Buses are operated by the state-owned Delhi Transport Corporation, which is connected with all major cities. Delhi is connected by Road to various parts of the country through several National highways. The bus will either leave you at Rajiv Chowk in Delhi or can directly drop you at Kalkaji Mandir Metro Station.

Hotels – Where to stay

There are many Dharamshala built by the Temple Trust for the devotees. These dharamshalas are free of costs and have a hygienic environment. The Temple Trust takes care of the temple very well. They provide hygienic food to the devotees. The expenses incurred are borne by the Trusteed of these temples. These Trustees donate money and various other things like ornaments and other important things to the Temple.

Where to eat

There are a lot of dishes which are given to the devotees. There are one-time free prasads served to the devotees. There are many other dishes that are served to the devotees for which they need to spend money. The food is prepared in a very hygienic conditions. All the eatables are taken good care while preparing food. Foods are prepared in a very hygienic atmosphere.

Apart from the food we get in the temple, there are many other hotels and places where one can have food. In Delhi, we can find food stalls everywhere. There are hotels and cafes like Cafe Coffee Day, Pind Balluchi, The First Floor Restaurant and many more. There are many other hotels which have nominal charges keeping the taste of the consumer in mind. They prepare food in a very clean and hygienic environment.

 Nearby Temples

  • Shiv Kalkaji Temple– Shiv Kalkaji Temple is believed to be the oldest Seedhpeeth in South Delhi. All the followers of Mata come here to offer prayer and seek blessings. It is believed that Mata gives the blessing to all her followers.
  • Lotus Temple– This temple is located close to Kalka Mandir Metro Station. This temple is situated right next to Kalkaji Park. Lotus Temple is entered via a parking lot. Lotus temple is known for the peace one gets after entering the temple. This is a temple where one finds silence. This temple rejuvenates one’s mind.
  • Iskcon Temple– This temple is one of the famous and the oldest Lord Krishna’s temples in the country. This temple is located closed to Nehru Place Metro Station. This temple can be reached via autorickshaw from the Metro Station.This temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna and her beloved Radha. Iskcon Temple stands for International Society for Krishna Consciousness or Hare Krishna Movement.

Apart from temples, there is other place here tourist can visit near Kalkaji Mandir. There are places like Nehru Place Market, Epicuria Mall, Kalkaji B Block Market, Laxmi Plaza, Prince Plaza etc. There are many places for tourist attraction in Delhi. There are many monuments, museums which can be visited living in Delhi. There are many places to shop as well to eat.