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Athalanallur Temple – Gajendra Varadan Temple at Athalanallur in Tirunelveli District

Athalanallur Temple, popularly known as Gajendra Varadan Temple, is located at Athalanallur village near Veeravanallur (near Ambasamudram) in Tirunelveli District, Tamil Nadu. The temple is associated with the famous Gajendra Moksha incident mentioned in Hindu puranas. The shrine is also known as Arulmigu Gajendravaradaswamy Temple and Sri Bhoomi Nila Samedha Aadhimoola Perumal Temple.

The sanctum sanctorum has the murti of Srihari Vishnu who is worshipped here as Aadi Moolam. He has four arms and is in standing posture. His two consorts Sridevi and Bhudevi are found in standing posture on either side. Murtis of Sage Markandeya and Sage Bhrigu are also found in the main temple.

The processional murti of Gajendra Varadan along with his two consorts is also found in the main sanctum sanctorum.

Sculptures of two huge dwaraplakas are found at the entrance of the Arda Mandapa.

The shrine of Garuda, flag staff and bali peetha faces the main sanctum sanctorum. Chakrathalwar with Narasimha carrying four discus is found near the Garuda murti.

There are also murtis of Therku Nachiyar (Goddess Lakshmi) and Vadaku Nachiyar (Bhudevi) in the temple complex. Another noteworthy aspect is the murtis of the ten avatars of Vishnu in the inner parikara of the temple.

There are also murtis of Krishna with Rukmini and satyabhama and paramapatha nathar (Vishnu in sitting posture).

Murtis of Andal and Vishwaksena are found in the Mahamandapa. There is also a sub shrine dedicated to Hanuman in the complex.

The shrine is located on the banks of Tamrabharani River. It is believed that the Gajendra Moksha incident happened on the banks of the river.

The temple faces east with a five tier Rajagopuram. There is another gopuram inside the temple complex. Pillars with beautiful carvings are found between the gopurams.

The temple carvings depict Gajendra moksha and Dashavatar.