Basic information about the temple
|Moolavar:||Kasi Viswanathar||Ambal / Thayar:||Visalakshi|
|Timing:||to & to||Parikaram:|
|Sung by:||Temple set:|
|City / town:||Lalpet||District:||Cuddalore|
|Maps from (click):||Current location||Mayiladuthurai (30 km)||Kumbakonam (53 km)|
|Cuddalore (68 km)||Ariyalur (69 km)|
Sthala puranam and temple information
We request you to please read this short background about village temples, before you proceed.
Lalpet (or Lalpettai) is located near Kattumannarkoil, in Cuddalore district, very close to the banks of the Veeranam lake. The temple is located very close to the Lalpet bus stand.
Earlier, this place was called Chandrasekharapuram, because there used to be a temple for Siva as Chandrasekharar (more on this, below). But later became Lalkhanpet, named after from Lal Khan, a minister under Nawab Janab Anwaruddeen, as a vassal of the British. Lalkhanpet, over time, was shortened to Lalpet.
The construction of most of the temple is brick, and so based on its architecture, the temple is clearly from the early medieval Chola period – possibly from the 10th century. However, due to poor maintenance and very few visitors except locals (since most Hindus who belonged to this place, have moved out) , the temple is in a really dilapidated state.
While the temple was open when we visited, a caretaker lady was helpful in showing us around. She also mentioned that puja was performed once a day on most days.
The temple is east-facing. There is no dhwajasthambam or bali peetham, and so one can see Nandi and the moolavar Kasi Viswanathar even from the road – perhaps most people do exactly that, which means they do not go into the temple. The moolavar Lingam is believed to have been brought from Kasi. There is a mani-koondu (bell tower) above the entrance, with a large, really old bell still working.
At the entrance to the garbhagriham are Vinayakar and Murugan. Amman’s shrine face south. In the koshtam around the garbhagriham, are Vinayakar, Dakshinamurti, Lingodhbhavar, Brahma and Durga. There are separate shrines for parivara devatas – Vinayakar, and Murugan with his consorts.
There is a separate Lingam for Chandrasekharar, in the north-west part of the temple. This is from the Chandrasekharar temple – the other Siva temple that used to exist in this place, after whom the place was originally named. Virtually all of the lands of that temple were encroached, and the location of that temple is today in the midst of locals who practice Islam. While relations between the various communities are very cordial here, in the absence of any visitors to that temple, the moolavar Lingam from that temple was brought here, and enshrined in the Kasi Viswanathar temple.
Other Information for your visit
The priest of the Kollimalai Keezhpathi temple also takes care of this temple. The temple could well do with a facelift, and those interested can visit the place to contact the priest.