Lakshmi Narayan Temple, Delhi, India

Deities: Lord Vishnu-Lakshmi
Location: New Delhi, Cannaught Place
Constructed by: R.D.Birla, 1938
Also known as: Birla Mandir
Festival: Janmashtami & Diwali

The Lakshmi Narayan Temple or the Birla Temple as it is popularly known enshrines Lord Vishnu – the preserver of the Hindu Trinity. The Temple is one of the major attractions of the capital city – Delhi. Built by the well-known industrialist, R.D. Birla, the temple is dedicated to Lakshmi (the goddess of wealth) and Narayana the preserver).

About the Temple:
The highest Shikara of the temple above the sanctum sanctorum soars 160 feet high. The temple faces the east and is situated on a high plinth. This chamber is dedicated to Lord Narayan and Goddess Lakshmi. There are other small shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva, Lord Ganesha and Hanuman. The holy Vedas are also enshrined in this temple. There is also a shrine dedicated to Lord Buddha. The shrine is adorned with fresco paintings depicting his life and work. The icons of the temple are in marble brought from Jaipur. Kota stone from Makarana, Agra, Kota and Jaisalmer were used in the construction of the temple premises. The Geeta Bhawan to the north of the temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna. The temples premises are dotted with miniature rock temples, which are a craze amongst the children. An artificial landscape complete with mountains and cascading waterfalls add to the beauty of the temple.

History:
It was built by eminent industrialist Raja Baldev Birla. This temple is dedicated to Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and Narayana, the preserver of this universe. It took nearly six years to construct this temple. The serene and piously enchanting surroundings awaken every soul from the slumber of this material world.

Architecture:
The temple is built in the Nagara style of architecture interspersed with modern influences. The entire temple is adorned with relief carvings depicting the scenes from mythology. 101 skilled pundits from Benares, headed by Acharya Vishvanath Shastri, carved the idols of the temple. One can find a number of friezes and artistic sculptures add to the aesthetic beauty of this temple. The temple has been designed by Sir Chandra Chatterjee (1873-1966), who combined the architectural styles of Orissa style sanctuaries and Mughal arcades. The highest tower in the temple reaches a height of 165ft, while the ancillary towers reach 116ft. The Geeta Bhavan, a hall adorned with beautiful paintings depicting scenes from Indian mythology. There is also a temple dedicated to Buddha in this complex with fresco paintings describing his life and work.

How to Reach:
by Road: Tourists can either take local buses from various points within the city to reach the monument, or they can hire auto-rickshaws and taxis or metro rail.
by Rail: Nearest Railway Station: New Delhi Railway Station
by Air: Nearest International Airport: Indira Gandhi International Airport.

Visit www.eTirth.com for more information on Temples, Ashrams, Gurus, Festival and Daily Panchangam (Hindu ephemeris).

If you love to read visit www.KathaVarta.org for Religious stories.

Last but not least, if you want to visit above Holy Pilgrimage, please contact and visit our associate partner www.YatraKhoj.com and e-mail at yatrakhoj@yahoo.com.
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Mahalxmi Temple, Mumbai, India

Deity: Goddess Laxmi
Location: On B. Desai Road, Breach Candy, Northern Foot of Malabar Hills, Mumbai
Built in: 1785
Significance: an ancient temple of Mumbai
Special Attraction: Navaratri celebrations
Best Time to visit: All through the year

Mahalaxmi temple is the sacred seat of three beautiful idols of Hindu goddesses, Mahalaksmi, Mahasaraswati and Mahakali, each molded in gold. All three images are adorned with nose rings, gold bangles and pearl necklaces and the image of Mahalaxmi is shown riding a tiger and a demon (Mahishasur) in tandem.

The temple is particularly dedicated to Mahalakshmi, who is the Goddess of wealth as per the Hindu mythology. The main doorway of the temple is richly ornamented, leading to the temple complex. Here, one can see various stalls that sell flower garlands and other items to make an offering to the Goddess. A flight of steps takes to the shrine of the Goddess

History:
Built around 1785, the history of this temple is supposedly connected with the building of the Hornby Vellard. It is said that when Britishers failed in their repeated attempts to connect Mahalakshmi area to Worli by building Breach Candy on account of ferocious tides, they had almost surrendered. The problem was fixed only by divine intervention when the goddess Lakshmi appeared in the dream of chief engineer and asked him to remove the three statues from the sea bed and establish them in a proper shrine. A search operation was launched to recover the statues and a temple was built. After this, the work on the vellard could be completed without a hitch.

Festival:
During Navaratri celebrations, the temple gets special looks. Devotees from distant places throng to temple to pay their obeisance. They have to stand for hours in long queues holding coconuts, flowers and sweets which they offer to the goddess.

How to reach:
One can easily reach Mahalaxmi Temple by taking local Buses, Auto-rickshaws, metro or by hiring Taxis from Mumbai.

Visit www.eTirth.com for more information on Temples, Ashrams, Gurus, Festival and Daily Panchangam (Hindu ephemeris).

If you love to read visit www.KathaVarta.org for Religious stories.

Last but not least, if you want to visit above Holy Pilgrimage, please contact and visit our associate partner www.YatraKhoj.com and e-mail at yatrakhoj@yahoo.com.
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