Puruhutika Devi Temple, Pithapuram, Andhra Pradesh
Puruhutika Devi Temple in Pithapuram (Andhra Pradesh) is not only a Shaktipeeth but is also one of the Ashta Dasha (Eighteen) Maha-Shaktipeeths. It is believed that the left hand of Mata Sati fell at this spot. The importance of this temple increases as it has a connection with Vishnupad Temple in Gaya.
The Story of Sati Mata
Sati Mata was one of Daksha Prajapati’s 27 daughters. The story of Daksha Prajapati’s grand Yagya is well known. As a result of his arrogance and ignorance, Daksha Prajapati not only failed to invite Lord Shiva but insulted Him in front of Sati Mata and everyone present. Sati Mata chose to end Her life rather than live with this insult. Lord Shiva’s rage and grief were uncontrollable when He heard about all this. Holding Sati Mata’s body in His arms, He started His Tandav Nritya in the skies. The only way to stop Lord Shiva was to separate Sati Mata’s body from Him. Lord Vishnu sent His Sudarshan Chakra which cut Sati Mata’s body into 51 parts. The places where these parts fell became Shaktipeeths and revered pilgrimages.
Pithapuram is an ancient pilgrimage. It was known as Puruhutikapuram and Pithikapuri earlier. The Puruhutika Shaktipeeth Temple is situated within the larger Kukkuteswara Swamy Temple complex. In the sanctum the Murti of the Devi can be seen in a standing posture. She has four arms and is beautifully adorned with silk garments and gold jewellery. Near the entrance to the temple is a sacred Kund known as Padgaya Sarovar. Sripad Vallabha, an Avatar of Lord Dattatreya prayed to Puruhutika Devi and achieved enlightenment here. There is a shrine dedicated to him adjacent to the temple.
When Indra Dev Prayed to Puruhutika Devi
It is said once Indra Dev cheated Ahilya Devi, wife of Gautam Rishi. When Gautam Rishi found out, he cursed Indra Dev to lose His manhood. Indra Dev now greatly regretted His deed and begged forgiveness from Gautam Rishi who reduced the curse. Indra Dev came to Pithapuram and prayed fervently to Puruhutika Devi. The Goddess blessed Indra Dev and freed Him of the curse.
- 5:30 AM to 12:30 PM
- 4:30 PM to 7:00 PM
How to reach Puruhutika Devi Temple
- The nearest railway station is Rajahmundry, about 65 km from the temple.
- The nearest airport is Rajahmundry.
- Visakhapatnam Airport, about km from the temple is a better option.