Vinayaka means ‘Primordial’. He is the ‘Aadhi muthalvan’ for all. He is the favorite God to all, right from the children to the elderly. All the pujas are started after worshipping and paying obeisance to Him.
The Vedas glorify Lord Vinayaka in the wordings – “Ganaanaamthvaa Ganapathim hava mahe”. Though Lord Vinayaka is being worshipped in all the temples all over the country, His temple in Kanipakam in Chitoor district in Andhra Pradesh is one among His most famous shrines. Here, he is a swayambhu idol and is called Varasiddhi Vinayaka. It is said that people had been worshipping Him at this temple since more than 600 years.
History of the temple
The deity here is a swayambhu idol. It is said that three brothers lived here in Kanipakam a few hundred years ago. Due to their karma, one of them didn’t have vision, another had speech impairment and the third had hearing impairment. They were engaged in farming. All the three were staunch devotees of Lord Vinayaka. One day, when they were drawing water from the well for watering the fields, the well dried up. When they started digging the well, they heard a sound. And, at one stage, blood splashed at them. When the brothers informed the villagers, they joined the brothers in digging. They sighted a statue of Lord Vinayaka with an elephant face. They tried to pull the statue out but however much they tried, they couldn’t. Then they brought thousands of tender coconuts and performed ‘abhishek’ to the statue with the milk of the tender coconuts. The tender coconut milk flowed into the fields! The place was called ‘Karanipakam’ because of this incident and in course of time, the name became Kanipakam, they say. The swayambhu Vinayaka is still there at the temple. The holy water from this well is distributed as ‘prasadam’ to the devotees. The temple has been built around the well. The idol is believed to be growing in size because the ‘kavasam’ of the previous year is invariably found unsuitable in size in the succeeding year. Every year, a new ‘kavasam’ is being made.
Bramhostavam festival is celebrated with all grandeur at this temple every year. The festival starts on the day of Vinayak chathurthi and the celebration is held for twenty days.
The people of Andhra Pradesh consider Kaanippaakkam Vinayaka as the Supreme Judge for settling disputes. Daily, Sathyapramaanam is being held here. The person should take a ‘special oath’ and swear and tell the truth before Vinayaka about whatever crime he has committed. If a person tells a lie and makes a false promise before Vinayaka, the Lord will punish him in course of time, they believe. And, for redemption of a sin already committed, the offender should promise to Vinayaka that he will not commit any sin thereafter, should apologize and seek His pardon.
Those waiting to get married, estranged couples, those with problems in money dealings and those suffering from incurable diseases come here and offer sacred grass garland to the Lord. They perform milk ‘abhishek’ also. Some perform Ganapathy homam. Kanipakam Vinayaka grants the wishes of all His devotees.
There is a sannidhi for Nagar also at this temple. Those with ‘sarpadosha’ come and worship here. After offering puja, they are relieved of their problems arising out of ‘sarpadosha’, it is said.
Location of temple
This famous temple is situated near Bahuta River at 12 km distance from Chitoor town. There is a rest-house in Kanipakam for the convenience of the devotees. And, there are hotels also in Chitoor. The temple is situated on Karnataka-Tamil Nadu border.
Timings: From 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.; from 3 p.m. to 9.30 p.m.
Free meal (Annadhaanam) is offered to the devotees. The temple comes under the jurisdiction of the Andhra Pradesh Government.
The Andhra Pradesh Government operates bus services from Thirupati and Chitoor to Kanipakam. The temple can be reached traveling by a taxi from Thirupathi. The railway stations near Kanipakam are Thirupathi and Chitoor. Sri Veera Anjaneya Swami temple, Sri Varadaraja Swami temple and Sri Manikandeswara Swami temple are situated near this temple. After visiting Kanipakam Vinayaka temple, we can visit these temples also. Our minds are purified by visiting temples and we get peace of mind. We can keep recharging our mind by visiting temples frequently.
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