1,000-year old Yadadri temple in Telangana gets complete makeover
Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s dream to build a magnificent temple in the state that matches Tirumala, India’s richest temple in the neighbouring Andhra Pradesh, is going to be a reality soon.
The ancient cave shrine of Lord Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy on the picturesque hills of Yadagirigutta, about 70-km away from Hyderabad, is getting ready for inauguration with a complete makeover at cost of nearly ₹1,000 crore.
Hundreds of sculptors and artisans are working round the clock to give final touches to this magnificent 1,000-year-old Vaishnavaite temple, which civil engineers and civic officials are racing against the time to complete the necessary civic infrastructure to provide all amenities for the pilgrims.
A sprawling 14.5-acre temple complex consists of seven temple domes, including a 100-foot main dome. “All the works related to the main temple complex including architectural works like inner and outer prakarams (compound walls), various types of stone-carved pillars, affiliated temples, sculptures of various gods and goddesses and Alwars (Vaishnavaite preachers) have been completed,” G Kishan Rao, vice-chairman and chief executive officer of Yadadri Temple Development Authority (YTDA), said.
Similarly, works on pushkarni (tank where devotees take a holy dip before having darshan), Kalyana Katta (tonsuring hall), circular road and queue lines, prasadam complex will be completed by March end and the temple will be ready for inauguration by the first week of May.
The total cost of the Yadadri project is around ₹1,800 crore. “Till now, we have spent ₹837 crore for the project which includes construction of retaining walls, development of temple city in 250 acres, land acquisition cost and development of infrastructure like laying of roads, construction of VVIP cottages and augmentation of drinking water supply,” Rao said.
Works on various other developmental works in the pilgrim town including provision of tourist facilities comprising cottages, multilevel parking and housing for the temple priests in a total area of 1,400 acres are going on, he said.
The centuries-old temple on Yadagirigutta, renamed now as Yadadri, was originally confined to just 2,500 square yards of area. Now, the temple complex is spread over 14.5 acres. The main hillock where the cave temple is located and eight other hills and lush green forests adjacent to it are being developed into a beautiful temple town.
The works which began in April 2016 are nearing completion. The temple is being redeveloped according to the ancient Agama shastra (scriptures dealing with construction of temples) and other Vedic scriptures.
“The uniqueness of the temple is that it is reconstructed without using cement, concrete or bricks, but only with Krishnashila (black granite) used by Kakatiya emperors of Telangana for the temple architecture. It can remain intact for another 10-11 centuries,” the YTDA CEO said.
Like Lord Venkateshwara of Tirumala, who devotees believe would fulfil all their desires, people of Telangana believe Lord Narasimha of Yadadri is most powerful, who wards off evil spirits and cures psychological disorders. They even believe that they could get cured of physical ailments.
“That is why the chief minister felt the need to develop Yadadri into a globally-known shrine on the lines of Tirumala,” Rao added.