CHENNAI : There is a small temple in Alwarpet called the Kodandarama Svami Udaiyavar Devasthanam Markandeya Sannidhi which was initially a Bhajana mandapa. About a hundred and eighty years back, the image of Ramanuja, the illustrious Sri Vaishnava preceptor was consecrated here.In 1932, the processional deity of Rama was installed and subsequently it grew into its present proportions. Interestingly, despite the name of this temple being Kodandarama Svami Udaiyavar Devasthanam Markandeya Sannidhi, the principal sanctum-sanctum is for Srinivasa Perumal.
The main deity is approximately six feet in height and is in a standing posture like God Venkatesvara of Tirumala (Tirupati). Srinivasa Perumal is seen with the Sankha and Chakra in the upper hands while the lower right hand is in the boon-giving posture (varada hasta) and the right hand is near the waist (kati hasta). He is also seen with a long sword. To the right of the sanctum of Srinivasa Perumal is enshrined Goddess Alarmelmangai Thayar just as this Goddess is seen in Tiruchanur.
Closeby is a shrine for Kodandarama with Sita to His right and Lakshmana to His left. The ustava-murtis of Rama, Lakshmana, Sita and Anjaneya are worshipped here as also Sudarsana (Chakrattazhvar), the personification of the chakra of Vishnu.In this Rama shrine is a processional image of Ramanuja, while the stone image of this preceptor is worshipped in the place in front.
In the mandapa opposite this sanctum is a small shrine for Bhakta Anjaneya facing Rama. Next to Ramanujacharya’s image is enshrined Sage Markandeya Maharishi, the family preceptor (kula-guru) of the Padmasaliyar community who have been actively in charge of this temple for a very long time.