May 28, 2018

Tiruneermalai Temple Tank (Waterbodies of Chennai - 6)

As per the legend, when Tirumangai Alwar came to this site, the hill was surrounded by water. He waited for six months for water to get drained and then he visited this temple. Hence, the site is called as Tiruneer Malai or Thoyagiri Kshetram. The word Neer and Thoya mean water. The words Malai and Giri mean mount.

Today, we do not have the hill surrounded by water. There is hardly a small temple tank, which looks picturesque in the aerial view from hilltop temple. This is one of those few temple tanks of Chennai suburbs which has water almost for the entire year.

This single tank serves the purpose of all the four deities of this famous temple of Tiruneermalai near Tambaram, the southern outskirts of Chennai. Shri Pushkarani for Ranganatha, Karunya Pushkarani for Neervanna, Sidha Pushkarani for Tri Vikrama and Swarna Pushkarani for Narasimha, all these holy waters are part of this single tank. I presume there must be separate tanks in those days and the other tanks would have been lost. A beautiful Neerazhi Mandapam is located in the middle of this tank.

Happy travelling. 

Note: As per a report, there were about 650+ waterbodies in Chennai region till 1980s. Today, only a fraction of them exist. And, most of those surviving waterbodies hardly have water and even some of them that  have water had been shrunk badly. In Chennai, there are tank roads without tanks nearby and lake view roads without any lake in the vicinity. There is a high possibility that even the few waterbodies that we have today might vanish in the near future. I thought of visiting the currently surviving waterbodies of Chennai and its suburbs and write about them in my blog as a series.

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