Chennai: The Marundeeswarar temple in Thiruvanmiyur in the city is one of the most popular shrines in the city, and continues to remain one of the locality’s favourite spots.
What makes the place all the more alluring is the tank that is situated here.
Historically called ‘Paapanaasani’, the waterbody has several intriguing stories floating around it.
According to a staff who works here,”The temple itself is 1,300 years old. The tank is surrounded by walls and grills and is kept under lock and key. Once a year, it is opened for the public from 6.30 am to 9.30 pm during the float festival. Around 20,000 people attend the ceremony, as it is believed that a dip in the tank will wash away a person’s sins. However, those here have a tough time keeping the tank clean.
“Leaves keep falling while passersby dispose plastic waste into the waters, making it difficult for us to maintain the 15 feet facility,” he said.
In a book titled ‘Thiruvanmiyur (Sri Marundeeswarar Temple, Chennai)’, that is authored by Besant Nagar resident M Rajagopalan, the tank gets a prominent feature.
It is written,”The mammoth waterbody a little away from the Eastern tower, is eulogized as Paapanaasani in the Sthalapurana which provided relief to Sri Parthasarathy.
“When Krishna met his mentor Upamanyu Rishi after the Mahabharata war, the sage told him to repent for having abetted sins during the battle by visiting the east coast and offer worship to the Swayambu Linga there. Krishna did so and had a dip in the theertha known as Paapanaasani. He was absolved off the sins. It was then Lord Siva requested him to reside as Parthasarathy and bless the devotees.
The temple of Parthasarathy is located at Thiruvallikeni at a distance of five kilometres from Thiruvanmiyur. This incident is recapitulated on the third day of the Brahmotsava at the Marundheeswarar temple, it says.