January 23, 2011

Thiruverkadu Veda Pureeswarar Temple - Chennai, India

Site Name: Veda Pureeswarar Temple
Site Type: Hindu Temple
Location:  Tiruverkadu, near Chennai, Tamil Nadu state, India
Highlights: The birthplace of Moorka Nayanar; one of 275 Paadal Petra Sthalams (important temple of Lord Shiva)
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: Chennai city is reachable by road, train, and flight; Padi can be reached by road from the other parts of Chennai
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

Thiruverkadu is a famous religious site located near Chennai city, the gateway to South India. Thiruverkadu, along with Mangadu, are frequently visited by the Hindu devotees. Even though Thiruverkadu has become very popular due to Mari Amman temple, there is a big ancient temple of Lord Shiva located in Thiruverkadu. It is unfortunate that people throng to Mari Amman temple like anything, however all those people hardly visit the Shiva temple of Thiruverkadu.

Around 1 km from the popular Mari Amman temple in Thiruverkadu, this temple of Shiva called as Veda Pureeswarar is located. Let us discuss about this temple in this article.


  • Sambandhar has revered the temple in his verses in Devaram.
  • God Vedapureeswarar or Validayanathar
  • Goddess Balambikai or Verkanni
  • Teerth (Holy water) - Velayudha Teerth
  • Sthala Vruksha (Holy tree) - Vela (Babul)
  • 23rd Devara Paadal Petra Sthalam located in the Tondai region
  • Four Vedas are believed to have worshiped Lord Shiva of this temple.


As all the four Vedas, namely Rig, Yajur, Sama and Atharva took the form of babul trees and worshiped Lord Shiva in this site, he is called as  "Veda Pureeswarar". Verkadu means Babul forest. After the Vedas took the form of babul trees, the forest eventually became full of babul trees and got this name, Verkadu. 

Moorka Nayanar, one of those 63 Nayanmars, was born in this site. He has a separate sub-shrine in this temple.

Lord Subramanya visited this site and he created the holy tank of this temple.

This is one of the sites in South India, where the sage Agastya got the darshan of wedding ceremony of Lord Shiva and Parvati.

Sapta Rishis, Pandavas, Sibi, Nava Grahas and Ashta Dik pals have worshiped Lord Shiva in this temple.

Vishnu lost his conch in the milky ocean. He got back his conch with the help of Lord Shiva in this site.

Sesha had worshiped Lord Shiva in this site and promised that people living in this area would not die due to poison or snake bite.


The temple was built by Kulotunga Chola in the 11th century CE. Later additions and renovations were done by Telugu Cholas and Nayaka Kings. 

Temple Layout:

The east facing temple has a five tiered Raja gopura. The huge tanks is found outside the gopura. The large temple that covers 1.5 acres of land has three prakaras. 

The lintel of the interior entrance has many interesting and beautiful stucco images.

The east facing sanctum enshrines Shiv Linga called as Vedapureeswarar. Behind him, the idols of Shiva and Parvati in the seated posture are found. Even Ganesha is also found along with his parents. The vimana is Gaja prshtha architectural style.

At the entrance of the sanctum, a small idol of Ganesha is found. Nandi mandap, bali peetha and the flag staff are found facing towards the sanctum.

The Goddess, Balambikai is found in a separate south facing shrine situated in the prakara. 

Some of the idols that are found in the inner prakara included Agastya, Surya, Nalvar, Ganesha, 63 Nayanmars, Chandikeshwara, Sekkilar, Vishwanath and Vishalakshi, Bhairav, Chandra and Anabaya Chola. Subramanya is found without his consorts and Shiv Linga worshiped by him is found along with him.

Navagrahas are found in a unique octagonal shaped pedastal. Surya is in the middle and all other Grahas are showing their backside to him.

The wall around the sanctum has the very beautiful niche images of Ganesha, Dakshinamurti, Lingodbhava, Brahma and Durga. Chandikeshwara is found in his usual location. 

The outer prakara has the sub-shrines of Arunagirinathar, Shani and Moorka Nayanar.

Even the holy tree is also found in the outer prakara region.

Happy travelling.


  1. Hi..do u have info on bus routes to this temple from vadapalani or koyambedu..?

    1. 72 C or 111 connects koyambedu to thiruverkadu