Mangala Devi Kannagi Temple, also known as Mangala Devi Temple. It is located on the Tamil Nadu-Kerala border at Thekkady in Idukki district of Kerala.
Mangala Devi Kannagi Temple History:
The temple is dedicated to Kannagi or Kannaki, who was a legendary woman, her name is believed to be synonymous with the conviction and strength. The temple is said to have been built more than 2000 years ago. The temple stands amidst the thick Periyar Tiger Reserve and is one of the unique temples in South India. People visit the temple not only to seek blessings from the deity but also to experience the wilderness of the surroundings.
The Legend Story Behind the Temple:
Every temple has a story to unfold. It is said that Kannagi burnt the whole city of Madurai out of rage when her husband was falsely accused of theft and killed. Kannagi, then, is believed to have gone to Suruli Hills and heaven from there on Pushpaka Vimana, along with Kovalan, her husband. The then King Chera Chenguttavan, who was inspired by this story, built a temple for the undying love and determination. The story of Mangala Devi Kannagi was later narrated to a Tamil poet Illango Adigar by the Emperor. The poet later wrote a book 'Silapathikaram' based on the story of Kannaki and Kovalan.
The Architecture of The Temple:
The temple is built in Pandyan architectural style. The walls of the temple and the steps that lead to the sanctum sanctorum are made of stones. Apart from Kannaki, there are some other idols that the people worship includes Karuppuswamy, Lord Shiva and Ganesha.
Visiting Time of Mangala Devi Kannagi Temple:
Mangala Devi Temple is not open the entire year. It is open to the devotees during the Chitrapournami festival which takes place in April-May. The festival is organized by the Governments of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. The Goddess is adorned with jewelry and garlands during the festival, and priests come from both the states to perform rituals at the temple.