Kanipakam Temple is situated in Kanipakam, Chittoor, Andhra Pradesh. This temple’s chief deity is Lord Ganesha.
The Kanipakam Temple exact location is 11kms away from Chittoor and situated in Irana Mandala. The temple was established in the beginning of 11th Century by Koluthunga Chola I during the Vijayanagara Dynasty.Along the banks of Bahuda River there is lies a small hamlet called Kanipakam. There is a meaning for the word ‘Kanipakam’. The word ‘kani’ means marshy wetland and ‘Pakam’ means the flow of the river’s water into the wetland.
Kanipakam Temple History
As per the folklore and legends, there lived three brothers who had one disability each. One of them was blind another one was dumb and the last one was deaf. Although with this disabilities they lived a happy life and lead their livelihood by cultivating in small piece of land. During the time of old, people either use to draw water from the well or the river. When one of them irrigated the other worked on the well and water the lands. One day while one of the brothers started to irrigate they soon found out that the well, from which they used to draw water has dried up and the water levels has dropped down. So one of them stepped in and started digging the base of the well in hope that they will be able to hit the underground water line. As they he was digging one day the iron tip of the spade came in contact with something hard more like a stone structure. Upon closer inspection the brother found out that something red like substance which looked and felt like blood was oozing out of the stone. Suddenly, within minutes the base of the well was red with ‘Blood’. Looking at this miraculous deed happening all the three brothers who watched this miracle happening, suddenly got rid of their deformities. Word spread around like wild fire about the miraculous stone found at the bottom of the well and the way it healed the three brothers. People from all over the village came rushing to the site and when they saw the idol like stone for themselves, they sacrificed thousands of coconut as a tribute to the idol. All the water from the coconuts sacrificed then started to flow for quite a distance. Thus the name Kanipakam Temple.
Some Other Features of the Idol
There are some other features about the Kanipakam Temple idol. One of them being that it grows in size. Currently we can see till the abdomen and knees. One of the devotee Smt. Lakshmamma, offered golden a ‘Kavacham’ (Golden Armour) to Lord Ganesha about 5 decades ago. Now the same thing doesn’t fit the idol. The water is dispatched as holy water to the devotees.
The Myth of the River
There were two brothers Sankha And Likhita. They reached Kanipakam as pilgrims. They journey from a long distance and both of them were tired and hungry. Likhita, the younger brother was feeling hungry and disregarding his elder brother’s orders he plucked a mango from the nearest tree and ate it. When the elder brother came to about this he was so angry that he complained against his own younger brother to the ruler who ruled that area. Sankha wanted his younger brother to be punished for his sins, punishment which he got. But the punishment was too harsh for the crime he had committed. He lost both of his arms. Later both of the brother took a bath in the Bahuda river near Kanipakam Temple. The moment they broke the surface of the holy water, Likhita found that both of his arms have been miraculously reattached to his shoulders. After hearing this incident, the ruler renamed the river as Bahuda (Bahu means arms)
Reaching Kanipakam Temple
Kanipakam Temple, can be reached by air, bus/car and train. The nearest airport is Tirupati Airport In Renigunta. Direct flights are available till Tirupati from Coimbatore, Vizag and Hyderabad. By train there are several options, in fact there are so many of them that one can get spoilt for choices. And moreover it’s only 68kms from Tirupati to Kanipakam. It’s a one and half hrs drive. Vellore Golden Temple is at a distance of 60 kilometers approximately, which is also a very beautiful place to visit.