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Thuravoor Thirumala Lakshmi Narasimha Temple – GSB – Festivals – Story

Thuravoor Thirumala Lakshmi Narasimha temple is located at Thirumala Bhagam in Thuravoor is located Thuravoor in Alappuzha district, Kerala. The temple is maintained by the GSB community. The shrine is dedicated to the Lakshmi Narasimha form of Bhagvan Vishnu. The 8-day annual festival in the temple is held in Malayalam Meda Masam (April – May).

The Sinhasan in the Sreekovil has the murti of Venkatachalapathy on the first step, Vishnu Padakam on the second step and Utsava murti of Sri Lakshmi Narasimha on the fourth step. The third step is vacant representing the original Ugra Narasimha murthy which is now consecrated at A.N Puram Temple in Alappuzha.

The upa devatas worshipped in the temple are Ganapathi, Hanuman and Naga Yakshi.

Thuravoor Thirumala Lakshmi Narasimha Temple History

Sri Raval Naikan, a young business man and an ardent devotee of Bhagavan Narasimha, came and settled in Thuravoor near the Vadakkanappan temple. He visited the temple every day without fail and attended the Deeparadhana from outside. In those days GSBs were not allowed inside other Hindu temples. He was not liked by the poojaris of the temple. One day the poojaris closed the temple early and even refused to give him any prasadam. With breaking heart, he prayed to Lord from outside the temple. He heard somebody asking him to go westward. He followed a light moving towards West.

When he reached the location of the present temple, the light disappeared and he felt somebody telling him to have a prathista there. At that time two sculptors appeared there and Raval Naickan requested them to make a Narasimha Vigraha for him. They made a shilpalaya (an enclosure) and entered therein to make the vigraha. Raval Naikkan waited for some time and later impatiently peeped into the shilpalaya since he could not hear any sound from inside. He found two Vigrahams there (one Ugra Narasimha and one Lakshmi Narasimha) and the sculptors missing. However, the Ugra Narasimha Vigraha was not fully finished with tip of a finger of one foot incomplete.

Raval Naikkan believed that the sculptors were divine (Vadakkanappan and Thekkanappan) and constructed a small temple there for the Narasimha Moorthy. He also constructed his house near to the temple. In the beginning, the affairs of the temple were managed by Sri Raval Naikkan himself and later when he became aged, handed over the governance to Cochin Thirumala Devaswom in 1704 AD.

Thuravoor area was then part of the Cochin state. A new temple and agrasalas were constructed during this period. The extensive land owned by the temple and financial assistance for construction of the temple was donated by the Maharaja of Cochin. The original pratishta was facing West. A peepal tree and the althara is seen even today at the west gate of the temple. It was later believed that the declining agricultural yield in the vast paddy fields between the temple and the sea (towards west of the temple) and heavy sea erosion was due to the drishti of Narasimha murthy and hence the new temple and prathista was made facing East. The temple was financially very sound and had vast landed properties spread in Thuravoor and Varapuzha.

During the persecution of Konkanis in Cochin state, many GSBs shifted to Alleppey which was in Travancore state. The Ugra Narasimha vigraha from Thuravoor also was shifted to Alleppey Old Tirumala temple (along with the Venkatachalapathy murti from Cochin) in 1792 AD and eventually was installed in Alleppey Anantha Narayana Puram temple in 1852 AD.

Thuravoor Thirumala Lakshmi Narasimha Temple Festival

The temple celebrates 8-day annual festival. The festival begins with thikodiayettem and concludes with arattu.

On the fifth day of the annual festival, the utsava murti of Bhagavan pays a visit to his devotees in the silver palanquin through the front of the temple and along the southern street to the nearby Vigneswara temple and then returns after pooja and Unjal seva (swing) there.

On the sixth day, Bhagavan pays a visit to houses in the north and then goes around the Arthikulangara Bhagavathy temple.

On the seventh day, Bhagavan is taken out ceremoniously in the Ashwa Vahana for Pallivetta to the mandapam at the back side of the Bhagavathy temple. This procession is the biggest of the annual processions.

On eighth day, at late night the utsava murti of Bhagavan is taken out in the silver palanquin to the Arattukulam near the Bhagavathy temple for Avibhithsnanam (the Arratu). Bhagavan is then taken to the Arattu mandapam at the center of the Arattukulam on a boat. After pooja and snanam (bath), He returns to the temple early next morning and then the flag is taken down. This culminates the annual festival.