Mahalaxmi Temple in Udaipur

Mahalaxmi Temple in Udaipur

On Diwali the place which becomes the main attraction for Udaipurites is the ancient Mahalaxmi temple in Bhatiyani Chauhatta, named after the Bhati Rani who lived here and developed this area.

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Mahalaxmi Temple in UdaipurOn Diwali the place which becomes the main attraction for Udaipurites is the ancient Mahalaxmi temple in Bhatiyani Chauhatta, named after the Bhati Rani who lived here and developed this area.

Later on, a lot of building material that remained unused after the construction of the famous Jagdish temple, five temples were built- Mahalaxmi, Hajareshwar Mahadeo, Radha Krishna temple in Jagdish Chowk, Mahadeo temple near Jagdish Chowk and Narbadeshwar temple near Delhi Gate.

It is believed that the Mahalaxmi temple was built by Maharana Shambhu Singh. Priest of the temple Laxmilal Shrimali says that Maharana Shambhu Singh fought a battle and from there he brought three idols of Mahalaxmi, Sundar Vinayak and Rishabhdev.

The temple of Mahalaxmi was built by Jagat Singh. The idol of Rishabhdev was given to the jains and that of Ganesh was installed in Hotel Vinayak for worship by the Maharana himself but later on it came in the possession of Bhatt (Nagda) Samaj.

Some people believe that the idols of Lord Jagdish and Mahalaxmi were brought from Bhinmal which is supported by the fact that in a song occurs a line ‘from Bhinmal descended Laxmi Rani and made Udaipur her home’.

Contrary to this, in the book abouit Kayasth Bhatnagar Jalori family it has been state that during the reign of Maharana Sangram Singh Second (1710-1734) his Dewan Pancholi Biharidas brought the idols of Mahalaxmi and Rishabhdev from Rampura (Malwa) and hot built their separate temples.

The temple of the highly revered Mahalaxmi, the Goddess of wealth and prosperity is an excellent sample of architectural and sculptural art of middle period Mewar.

Mahalaxmi Temple in Udaipur

In the space in front of the ‘sabha mandap’ on either side is an idol of an elephant holding lotus and water filled ‘kalash’ in its trunk and they seem to doing Mahalaxmi’s ‘abhishek’.

The beautiful idol of Mahalaxmi is always dressed attractively and only her face is visible. Attired in red, green, yellow or golden coloured sari-chunari the goddess wears a golden crown and kangan. Her beautiful looks are described in a ‘sholaka’ inscribed on a stone slab here.

Mahalaxmi’s birthday is celebrated with great enthusiasm on the eighth day of Shraddha Paksh. Panchamrita Abhishek is done in the morning. The idol is attractively decorated.

During the day a big ‘yagna’ is performed with the help of Pandits and a number of couples take part in it. People who come for darshan and puja offer ‘panjari’, flowers, fruits and ‘laddoos’, after ‘purna aarti’ in the evening, there is chanting of ‘Sundarkand’.

The aarti at midnight draws huge crowd of devotees. On Friday also a day devoted to Laxmi a large number of people visit the temple.

Mahalaxmi Temple in Udaipur

Mahalaxmi is the family deity of Shirmali Samaj. Whereas in other communities anything auspicious begins with the worship of Lord Ganesh, the Shrimalis invoke Mahalaxmi, the primordial power, at the beginning of every important ceremony. The temple is maintained by Shrimali Jatiya Sampati Trust.

On Diwali, the whole area between Jagdish Chowk and Samor Bagh is elaborately decorated with multicoloured bright festoons and buntings. There is eye-catching illumination of various designs and in different hues. The whole area has a gay and festive look. People come for ‘darshan’ in such large numbers that there are long queues and the wait too is long. From Dhan teras to Annakut, it seems the whole town visits the temple.

On Diwali day, the temple opens at 5.30 in the morning. Mangla ‘aarti’ is performed at 9.30 am and the evening ‘aarti’ at 7.30 pm. Maha ‘aarti’ takes place at midnight and ‘kheer’, ‘panjari’ and fruits are offered as ‘prasad’.

The festivities start on Dhan Teras when the temple opens at 4 am. Annakut which follows Diwali is celebrated in a big way. Aarti takes place at 6.30 pm and huge quantities of ‘prasad’ of various forms in distributed to devotees. Special ‘shrangar’ is done during these four days.

Shreeji Arvind Singh Mewar visits the temple with his family to worship Mahalaxmi and make offerings to her during Diwali celebrations. So deeply is Mahalaxmi, the giver of wealth and prosperity, revered by some people in Udaipur that they visit her every Friday and Sunday.

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