Wednesday, August 12, 2015

The Ochira Para Brahma temple at the northern extremity of Kollam district is so sacred a center to the Hindus that they revere it as the Benares of the South. The temple, without a walled enclosure or roof for the deities or a specific sanctum sanctorum, is believed to have been a Buddhist center that reverted after the revival initiated by Sri Sankaracharya.

The main festival at the temple is a 12-day affair, called 'panthrantu villaku'(twelve lamps) starting on the first day of Vrischikam (Malayalam era) falling in the middle of November. The Ochira Kali (game) on the first and second of Mithunam (mid-June) is a big draw. The 'game' as it were imitates a battle of rival armies and is held more often in knee-deep rainwater at the peak of the monsoons, and the belief is that it will invariably rain on Ochira Kali even in a drought year

The temple is open to all regardless of faith. The 36-acre compound with very old trees is along NH 47.

How to Reach:
34 k.m. north of Kollam and 105 k.m. from Thiruvananthapuram airport. The Ochira railway station is just 3 k.m. away.

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