Veerapandi Gowmariamman Temple - Tamilnadu
This temple is built by the Pandya King Veera Pandi during 14th Century and is located at a distance of 80 kms from Madurai.
The legend has it that, eons ago a king ruled this village was affected by some eye disease, he underwent all kind of treatments but couldn't recover from his ailment, at last one sage suggested him to worship Gowriamman and Kanneswaramudaiyar, the king also prayed to those gods. Miraculously his eyes were cured, so in reverence to those two Gods he erected this temple.
Raising 'Agni Chatti', offering Maavizhakku and "Pookuzhi Irangudhal" for the Goddess Gowmariamman is the main part of the worship. Agni Chatti - Devotees carry fire pots, that is clay pots filled with pieces of burning coal in their plain palms and walk around the temple. Maavizhakku - "Dough Lamp" is prepared by mixing Rice powder with jiggery, making the dough in the shape of a lamp. This is filled up with ghee and the dough lamp is lighted
Finally on the 7th day of Chitirai festival "Pookuzhi irangudhal" takes place - A pit is dug on the ground and is filled up with burning pieces of coal. People will see to that the coal pieces keep on burning throughout the night. Devotees will walk and pass through this pit enchanting the name of the goddess loudly
Temple Car festival is most popular during Chithirai Thiruvizha. During this fete Amman will give Dharshan to her devotees in various forms, adorned in flowers, fruits, and garlands. Ear boring and tonsure ceremony (shaving off heads), sacrificing live goats to the goddess take place at the back yard of the temple
The famous yearly Chithirai Gowmariamman festival is celebrated in this town for 8 days (starting mostly from the 7th of May) which is a sight to behold. The goddess in this temple is a Suyambu, which means it is not a man made one, it is found naturally while digging out and so this goddess is considered to be more powerful. Festoons (Thoranam) made of Neem leaves and Mango leaves will adorn the village showing the commencement of the festival The Chithrai festival commences on the night of Shivaratri and goes on for 7 days.
The deity is famous forwarding off ailments of eye diseases, measles and other infection diseases. The temple is 200 years old.
Temple is open for the visitors from 5 AM to 12 PM and 4 PM to 9 PM.
Kannagi Temple, Sri Saneeswara Baghwan Temple, Vellappar Temple, and Kamatchi Amman Temple are some of the nearby temples.
Bus : There are local bus facilities from Madurai, or else you can also take taxi from Madurai bus stand.
Train : Madurai railway station is the nearest one; from there you should take another bus or auto to reach this temple.
Airport : Madurai airport is handy to this temple.