Since childhood, I’ve grown up listening to the stories narrated by my grandmother on how daring Lord Anjaneya Swamy was, and how devoted. He was to Lord Rama. And then, he became my favourite God. So, when I heard of the Kondagattu Anjaneya Swamy temple, I made sure that during my trip to Karimnagar and surrounding areas, we visited the famous temple.
After taking a detour from the highway, the road takes you through steep hilly roads to the temple. Surrounded by dense vegetation, the landscape looks very beautiful. There were a lot of people going to the temple – some in shared taxis, some in bullock carts, while some were walking all the way up to the temple atop the hill.
Later, we came to know that if a woman offers puja for 40 days in the temple, she is blessed with a child. Hence, many women who want to have a child go there. The locals believe that the Lord cures them of a lot of diseases too.
En route, we found a lot of boards and rocks with paintings of Anjaneya Swamy depicting the Lord in myriad ways.
According to the local legend that dates back to 300 years, the original temple was constructed by a cowherd called Singam Sanjeevudu. Singam came up the hillock searching for his lost buffalo. As he was tired, he slept there.
The story has it that while he was sleeping, Lord Anjaneya came in his dream and showed him where his buffalo was. When he woke up, he saw a glowing idol of Lord Anjaneya Swamy. Later, he built a small temple there. And the temple as we see it now was constructed 160 years ago by Krishna Rao Deshmukh.
As we entered the temple area, we saw a few soothsayers who sat in a row with caged parrots.
A soothsayer lays the cards and the parrot chooses one that is supposed to predict the future of the person who approached him. When we walked in, we saw that the soothsayer was interpreting what was written in the card and explaining in simple terms, the person was listening very attentively, sharing his problems and seeking solutions.
After visiting the main temple, we went to visit other Gods including Lord Venkateshwara, Goddesses Alwaarula and Lakshmi. After sitting in the serene premises of the temple for a while, we started on our journey back home.
(The author is a travel photographer)