Tiruvallur (Tamil: திருவள்ளூர்) had given its name to the district and is the Headquarters of the Tiruvallur District. It is a temple town and Sri Veera Raghavar Temple is most famous and is one of the 108 Divya kshetras. Built on the banks of river coovam and is about 40 Km from the Chennai city has a long history of rulers starting from Pallavas. The towns and villages around this place were the scene of Carnatic wars.
Lord Vishnu had come in guise of an old man and had asked food and shelter to the Sage Salihotra. The Lord had asked the sage "Evvul? [எவ்வுள்?]" (where to stay), the Sage had replied pointing to his hut as "Ivvul" (inside the hut). Hence the name is called "ThiruEvvul". The word "Tiruvallur" is supposedly derived from the Tamil sentence "tiru evvull?" திரு எவ்வுள் meaning, "Tiru" - god (a common prefix in South India for temple towns), "evvull" - where do I sleep. So, Tiruvallur means, a place/town where, the God, Veera Raghavar asked a saint for a place to sleep for a night.
Present Tiruvallur, Tiruvannamalai, Vellore, Kancheepuram were then known as Thondaimandalam. The Sambuvarayar dynasty was the earlier ruling the area with Padavedu as their capital, before these areas came under Vijayanagar kingdom. Both these dynasties believed that Sri Anjaneya /Sri Hanuman is the protector of their kingdom. They had the practice of building temple for Hanuman in the border of the each village or town they developed. The temple architecture of these area vouches for the influence of Vijayanagar style. The influence of Sri Hanauman in Padavedu, Vellore vouches for the Sambuvarayas belief in the Lord as their protector.
Tiruvallur which was a part of the Thodaimandalam has two famous Hanuman temples nearby. The temple for Anjaneya [Hanuman] in the village Kakkalur just three km from this place is famous since the Hanuman of this temple was installed by Sri Vyasaraja and has a huge following among the traditional Hanuman devotees. The other temple for Hanuman established by the disciple of Sri Mandramurthi, Sri Venkatesa Battachar is about three km from this place on the other direction. The huge forty feet Sri Panchamukha Hanuman is a delight to see.
This small village named “Kakkalur” is located just three km from Tiruvallur. Easy way to reach this village is to take a local train from Chennai Central and get down at the station Putlur, a station before Tiruvallur Station. It takes around one hour to reach this place. There is small board announcing “Alight here for Kakkalur Veera Anjaneya Swami Temple”. Take the road running perpendicular to the station. There are auto rickshaws to take you to Sri Anjaneya Temple.
Sri Anjaneya Swami Temple is very simple. The devotees can have dharshan of the Lord from the main road itself. The temple consists of Garbagraham and a big mandapam in front of it. There is a small kitchen in the side of the temple. The present temple structure had been built in the recent past. Sri Raghavendra Mutt, Perambur, Chennai with the help of a local Madwa family had taken initiative to rebuild the temple. Sri Raghava Acharya of Kakkalur had taken all the possible help from the locals and had improved upon the temple and maintaining it.
On the one side of the Anjaneya temple is a small Pillyar [Sri Ganesha] temple. Therefore a devotee who is visiting this temple can have dharshan of the ‘Adi’ [beginning – Sri Ganesha] and ‘Andha’ [end-Sri Anjaneya]. There is a peepal tree on which a neem tree had entwined, standing between these two sannadhis. Devotees believe that standing between this entwined trees and the entrance of the temple and offer prayers to Lord Hanuman their wishes will be met at the earliest.
The Lord of this kshetra Kakkalur - Sree Veera Aajaneyar had been installed by Sri Vyasaraja. The region had been under the influence of Vijayanagara samrajya for quite sometime. Sri Vyasaraja who had been on pilgrimage in this region had installed Sri Anjaneya. Pujya Sri Raghavendra guru had also visited this place and worshipped this Veera Anjaneya.
The Lord of this kshetra Sri Veera Anjaneya Swami stands tall and majestic. Tall about nine to ten feet in height. The majestic murti gives an impression that we need not to worry when He is there. Sri Hanuman in standing posture with His right hand in ‘Abaya mudra’ and on the left hand He is holding Sowgandhika flower. In both the hands He is wearing ‘kankanam’. The long tail of Sri Anjaneya is seen raised above His head. The Lord’s tuft is seen neatly tied. The Lord is wearing three sets of ornaments in His neck. His lotus feets are seen ever ready and eager to come for the help of His devotee. Above all the glowing eyes of the Lord give the devotees all the compassion they seek and comforts they require.
The poojas are conducted as per the prescribed norms of Madwa tradition. The temple had been neatly maintained by the local Madwas from the meager collection they get from the devotees. They also perform poojas in the Ganesh mandir nearby.
Visit this pleasant place Kakallur and have dharshan of the majestic Lord and be refreshed. He is sure to make the devotee pious, bestows compassion and gives what is sought.
[ed. September 2011]
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SRI HANUMAN THINKS DIFFERENTLY, THINKS FAST, THINKS AHEAD AND ACTS FOR SURE.
Our salutations to this Hanuman who always brings subham - everything that is good - for His devotees and eliminates the bad and the evil. He removes even the traces of bad thoughts and deeds from His devotees. i.e He makes them pure in words, thought and deed.