January 8, 2011

Kaladipet Varadaraja Perumal Temple - Chennai, India

Sri Kalyana Varadaraja Perumal temple at Colletpet a.k.a. Kaladipettai in Chennai is a temple, which was originated due to a British officer.

Kaladipet is North Chennai locality, which is close to the historic Tiruvottriyur. Today, Kaladipet is an area having major population of labourers and fishermen. Hence, the existence of such an old temple is unknown to the most of the people in Chennai. However, Kalyana Varadaraja Perumal Temple, located here, is quite famous in and around Tiruvottriyur. You can find hundreds of people visiting this temple during the weekends and you need to stand in long queue for hours to get the darshan of the deity.

Kalyana Varadaraja Perumal temple is located at the Market Road in Kaladipet. In fact, the market road is the landmark for this temple. It is hardly 500 meters from the main road connecting Chennai and Tiruvottriyur. The temple was built in the 18th century CE and it has an interesting story.

Joseph Collet was the Governor of Madras (the erstwhile Chennai) for the period 1717 - 1719 CE. Veeraraghava, a Brahmin, who was in a high post in the British Government, became very close to Collet, thanks to his sincere work and loyalty. However, Collet didn't like Veeraraghava's habit of travelling to Kanchipuram city often to visit his favorite temple of Varadaraja Perumal, as he used to report late to the office often. He gave Veeraraghava some money and also allowed him to collect more funds from the people to build a temple for Lord Varadaraja in his own locality. Thus, the temple of Kalyana Varadaraja Perumal came into existence in Kaladipet. In fact, the area was named after the Governor as Colletpet, and the name got transformed as  Kaladipet later.

Kaladipet Kalyana Varadaraja Perumal temple is a small beautiful temple with a tank and various shrines. The sanctum enshrines Lord Varadaraja Perumal (Vishnu). He has four arms and is found in the standing posture. It is said that this idol is an exact replica of Varadaraja Perumal idol of Kanchipuram temple. The presiding deity is seen along with his consorts Sri Devi and Bhoo Devi on his either sides.

The temple also houses the shrines of Manavala Mamunigal, Alwars, Ram with Lakshman and Sita, Hanuman, Chakrathalwar and Andal along with Nammalwar.

The Goddess of the temple is Perundevi who is found in a separate shrine in the prakara.

The highlight of the temple is Navagraha shrine, which is normally not found in Vishnu temples.

Happy travelling.

Fast Facts:
Site Name: Sri Kalyana Varadaraja Perumal Temple
Site Type: Hindu Temple
Location: Kaladipet, Chennai city, Tamil Nadu state, India 
Highlights: A Hindu temple built due to efforts by British; It is believed that unmarried visitors of the temple who wish to get married would get that boon
Nearest Railway Station: Chennai - well connected from the cities/towns all over India
Nearest Airport: Chennai has both national and international airports
How to reach: Easily reachable by road, train, and flight
Hotel: Many star hotels, luxury hotels/resorts, and budget hotels are available in Chennai
Restaurants: All options - vegetarian, non-vegetarian, Chinese, South Indian, Gujarati, North Indian, Punjabi,....- you can find everything in Chennai city

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  1. hai,

    nice post about kaladipet. want to talk about tiger varadhacharry and his family. i was bron in kaladipet, my grandfather name is rayasan (c)kolucharalla thiruvenkatacharry.if you have any details about tiger varadhacharrys family want to see them and want to talk tothem

    Tiruvenkatacharry srinivasa bhaskar

    1. Thanks Mr. Bhaskar. Unfortunately, I do not have contact details of Tiger Varadhacharya's family.


    2. I am vijayaraghavan born in Kaladipet in 1939
      You have told that you have related to one Thiruvengadachary
      Was he was the trustee of this temple anytime/

    3. Mr.Bhaskar your grndapa thiruvengadachariar was any time functioned as a trustee to this temple/