Banashankari Amma Temple:
Banashankari Amma Temple or Banashankari Temple is a Hindu shrine located in Cholachagudda near Badami, Karnataka, India.As it is located in the Tilakaaranya forest, the Banashankari Devi Temple is popularly called Banashankari or Vanashankari. The temple deity is also called the Parvati goddess Shakambhari an incarnation.
The temple attracts Karnataka devotees as well as Maharashtra’s neighboring state. Badami Chalukya kings, who worshiped the goddess Banashankari as their tutelary deity, built the original temple. The temple is celebrating its annual festival in the months of January or February called Banashankari jatre. The festival includes cultural programs, a boat festival, and a Rath yatra when the goddess of the temple is paraded in a chariot around the city.
Banashankari Amma Temple History:
Historians dated the initial temple to the 7th century AD — the period of Kalyani Chalukya to Jagadekamalla I in 603 AD (according to epigraphic texts) which inserted the picture of the goddess. The current renovated temple was constructed in 1750 by the chief of Maratha, Parusharam Agale.
Banashankari Amma Temple Structure:
The temple was originally constructed in the architectural style of Dravid.The reconstructed structure is in the architectural style of Vijayanagara.The temple is surrounded on all sides by a high wall.The primary structure consists of a mukha mantapa (sanctuary), ardha mantapa (entrance porch / chamber in front of the sanctum) and Vimana (tower) top sanctum.
Banashankari Amma Temple Legend:
Skanda Purana and Padma Purana texts state that the demon Durgamasura was constantly harassing local individuals. The Lord directed the goddess Shakambari to assist the individuals, answering the prayers of the Devas who appealed to God through a sacrifice to safeguard them from Durgamasura.
The goddess emerged in the form of the goddess Shakambari through the Yagna ceremony (fire-sacrifice). After a fierce meeting, she murdered the demon and restored peace in the region. Banashankari is regarded as the incarnation of the goddess Parvati, the goddess Shiva’s consort.
Coconut, plantain and betel leaf crops and trees are found in the forests around the temple. Therefore, it is also said that the goddess supplied vegetables and food for the individuals to survive during a serious famine, and thus the name Shakambari was given to the goddess.
Banashankari jatre (‘ jatre ‘ implies a “fair”) is held annually at the temple precincts as a religious cum cultural festival on the occasion of the Rath yatra, for about three weeks from the Rath yatra. It begins on Pushya masa’s 8th day. Celebrated on the day of the full moon.
There is no traceable previous information confirming the start of such a festival, but it is inferred that it was begun some two hundred years ago. Pilgrims from across Karnataka, as well as Maharashtra’s neighboring state belonging to various religious convictions, gather here in big numbers to celebrate the festival.
Banashankari Amma Temple Timings: 6 am – 7 pm
Banashankari Amma Temple Address: Banashankari Amma Temple,CHOLACHAGUDDA, BANASHANKARI, BADAMI-587201
Banashankari Amma Photos: