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Onakkoor Devi Temple – Festival – History – Rare Temple With Dwarapalika

Onakkoor Devi temple is located at Pampakuda village on
Piravom – Muvattupuzha road in Ernakulam district, Kerala. The 8-day festival in
the temple ends on Uthram nakshatra in Kumbham month with Arattu.  A special arattu festival is again held on
Thrikarthika nakshatra in Vrischikam month. The guardian deity in the temple is
female Dwarapalika.

The shrine is dedicated to Goddess Durga or Bhagavathi. The
deity faces east. The murti of Onakkoor Devi is nearly 5.5 feet high including the
peedam. It is carved out of stone.

The upa devatas or subsidiary deities worshipped in the
temple are Alungal Bhagavathi, Dakshinamurti and Ganapathi.

The shrine is one of the rarest Hindu temples in which
Dwarapalika is found instead of Dwarapalaka.

The Prathishta murti Durga in the temple is kanyaka or
virgin and for this reason one Dwarapalika looks into the sreekovil or the
sanctum sanctorum as to protect the Goddess.

No fragrant substance is allowed inside the temple. Devotee
can only carry in Chandan. Only Veda mantras are chanted in the temple.

The naivedyam for Pantheeradi ritual is podiyari chorru.

History has it that Kakkassery Bhattathiri had resided in
the temple. He was later thrown out of the community as he did not follow the
caste system rules. It is believed that Kizhapurathu Bhattathiri of the temple
had taken the lead in throwing out Kakkassery from the community.

In ancient times the temple belonged to Kavungal,
Kanjirappally, Pallipuram and Elamana Illams.

The temple is now managed by Uzhanma Devaswom and a committee
of villagers.

A Vishnu temple is located near the shrine. During the 8-day
annual festival in Onakkoor Devi temple, a day is dedicated to observing
festival in the Vishnu temple.

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