Monday, September 10, 2007

Kanipakkam - Sri Varasidhi Vinayakar

The Temple
The famous temple of Sri Varasidhi Vinayaka of Kanipakkam is situated on Chittoor - Arakonda Road. Kanipakkam is closer to Karnataka and Tamilnadu state borders.

The word 'Kani' means 'wetland' and 'Parakam' means 'flow of water into the wetland'. This name follows a legend that is connected to the temple.

Once upon a time there lived three farmers, each dumb, deaf and blind by birth respectively. They owned a piece of land and used to do irrigation on the land from a well.

One day they found that the water in the well got dried up and they could no longer continue their job. One of them got into the well and started digging it up.

He was taken aback to see the iron implement hitting a stone like formation. Later, he was shocked to see blood oozing out from it. Within in a few seconds the entire water in the well, turned blood red in colour.

Thus, startled by this divine sight, all the three became normal getting rid of their deformities. As soon as the villagers came to know about this miracle, they thronged to the well and tried to deepen the well further.

But their attempt proved futile because the 'swayambhu' idol (the self-manifested) of Lord Vinayaka emerged from the swirling waters. But they were not able to dig out the complete idol fully.

After this miracle, coconuts were offered and the theertham from the coconuts covered the entire area. This led to the modification in the usage of the word 'Kaniparakam' and was later pronounced as 'Kanipakkam'. Even today the idol is in the original well and the springs of the well are perennial and eternal. During the rainy season, the holy water from the well overflows even today.

Another striking and strange feature of the idol is that it is still growing in size. At present, we can see only till the knees and the abdomen of the idol.

Smt. Lakshmamma, an ardent devotee had offered a 'Kavacham' (Armour) to the Lord, 50 years ago but today it is out of size and doesn't fit the idol. The holy water from the well is offered to the devotees as Theertham.

Bahuda River
Long ago there lived two brothers Sankha and Likhita. They were on a pilgrimage to Kanipakkam. As the journey was tiring, the younger brother Likhita felt hungry.

Disregarding the advice of the elder brother he plucked a mango from the mango grove. Sankha felt bad and reported this to the ruler of that area and pleaded for punishment for the sin committed during the pilgrimage. Thus Likhita was punished severely being deprived of both arms.

Later they took bath in the river near Kanipakkam temple. Lo Behold! The chopped arms were restored to Likhita as soon as he had a dip in the sacred waters of the river. These incidents led the ruler to rename the river as 'Bahuda' (Bahu means human arm).

Thus the river beside Kanipakkam temple is now known as 'Bahuda River'.

The Up-holder of 'Truth'
The swayambhu idol of Kanipakkam is the up-holder of truth. Disputes between people are resolved by taking a 'special oath' in front of Vinayaka.

The people in the dispute take a holy dip in the temple tank and swear before the lord. It is taken as gospel truth. There are instances when the person who committed that sin voluntarily agrees as soon as he had the dip and much before entering the temple itself.

It seems the Lord lawns invisibly on the sinner and makes him repent & feel guilty for his sinful deeds. The promises made in front of the Lord relieves one from errors and protects in times of troubles.

It is a tradition that people living in this place follow only truth.Thus the glory of Sri Varasiddhi Vinayaka spread far and wide and the honourable courts uphold the 'special oath' in their judicial pronouncements.

In this Vinayakar temple, one can see the old manuscripts of the third Kulothunga Chozha and Nedumara varma Sundara Pandiyan's time. Archaeologists say that Kulothunga Chozha should have built this temple in 11th century.

The annual festival, "Brahmotsavam" is held for 20 days commencing from Vinayaka Chaturthi.

There is no direct train service to Chittoor from Chennai. AP Tourism operates daily trips to Kaanipakkam.

By Road: Go to Chittoor via Ranipet and then to Kaanipakkam.


  1. Good Work. Informative. Waiting to see more temples here. Keep updating.

  2. Thanks for your valuable information, good place to spend the weekends, kindly provide some more information like how to reach the place? and also let me know the mode of transport will be better like road or train. kindly update the informations with some more details.


  3. Good piece of information. keep visitng many places and post info -more of visuals
    Regards Natarajan

  4. You have done a good work. keep it up. Is it possible to visit our Madurantakam Sri Eri Katha Kothandaramar Temple and Sri Venkateeswarar Temple which are very ancient temples in Madurantakam. If possible, I'm here to help you. mail me at

    best regards,
    pon.vasudevan, Madurantakam.

  5. Saravanaa, mikka nandri. Your detailed temple informations are of great help for people like me. By going through your blog, I can do an itinerary to visit the temples I wish to visit. Thank you once again. May God bless you.

    S. Muthukrishnan

  6. Dear Sir,
    Thank you very much for sharing with the world, information about so many temples some of which are rarely talked about...

    I am interested in knowing more about Nagarajan Swamy Temple in Nagarkoil. Can you please help me?

    ThripuraSundari. V.

  7. Dear Friends,
    I wish there was a blog or database that
    would give the founding dates of TN temples.
    I'm only interested in ones from 10th
    century & earlier, and have great difficulty sorting them out of the great number of sacred

  8. Dear Saravan,

    It's the best work I've come across in this divine field.
    Your efforts are really worth and will surely go a long way in keeping the Hindu traditions alive for generations to come.
    May God bless you & make you continue the good work.

    Best wishes,

    < >

  9. pl. try to come once via rpt. to kannipakkam. i will arrange for nice darshan and after that good dhaga shanthi and food. Expecting yr visit. thanku.

  10. What is your latest temple visit? I dont find any recent additions...
    S Harihara Murthy, Chennai

  11. Just to add There are frequent bus services between Tirupathi and Kanipakkam. Two hours one way. Darshan takes around less than an hour. SO total to and from from Tirupati would be five hours. One way that i would recommend in case you are planning a long Tirupati darshan is to set aside half for darshan at Kanipakkam and the rest half either you can visit local temples in tirupathi or you can head to Kalahasthi.

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