VIJAYAWADA: More than 30,000 devotees thronged Sri Durga Malleswara Swamy Varla Devasthanam (SDMSD) atop Indrakeeladri on Monday, October 11, 2021, the fifth day of Dasara festivities. Goddess Kanaka Durga Devi was decorated in two avatars - Sri Annapurna Devi and Sri Mahalakshmi Devi. According to temple officials, the temple received a revenue of Rs 20.37 lakh (till 5 pm) through sale of darshanam tickets and laddu prasadams.
Devotees were allowed to have darshan of the deity, who was adorned in the avatar of Sri Annapurna Devi from 5 am to 12 noon. For changing the avatar, officials stopped darshan for more than an hour which resulted in devotees in large numbers forced to wait in the queues.
Goddess Kanaka Durga decorated as Sri Annapurna Devi had a feeding bowl and a ladle in her hands to serve food. Lord Siva stood at her doorstep to depict that the Lord was asking her for food. Sri Annapurna Devi, who represents ‘anna’ (food), blesses her devotees with sufficient food.
“Through this avatar, the Goddess wants to convey to the devotees that Lord Siva himself begged her for food, and freed himself from starvation. One should seek Her blessings and give him or her ‘anna’ without which no living creature can survive. The only one mother who feeds all the creatures is Sri Annapoorna Devi,” temple executive officer D Bramaramba said.
Later in the afternoon, Kanaka Durga Devi blessed the devotees in the form of Sri Mahalakshmi Devi, who is one of the ‘thrisakthis’, and is known for her dhairya (courage). “Sri Mahalakshmi Devi played a vital role in Mahishasura Mardhanam. She is greatly praised and her significance is given in detail in ‘Sri Suktam’, and ‘Lakshmi Tantra.’ Sri Mahalakshmi Devi, who is the transfigured form of riches and wealth, appears with a lotus in both hands, and ‘varadaabhaya hastha’ (fear not, and blessings) to the devotees. In this attire, the Goddess is decorated with many ornaments and currency.
Legend says Sri Mahalakshmi Devi born out of the Ksheera Sagara (an ocean of milk), when it was churned, showers her devotees with riches, ‘Sarva Saubhagyam’ (all worldly pleasures), ‘Ashta Aishwarya’ (eight treasures) and ‘ashta siddhi’ (eight accomplishments). Hence, her statues of eight forms are found around the sanctum sanctorum,” the EO explained.
Meanwhile, Vijayawada city police and intelligence and security wing conducted trial run ahead of CM Jagan’s visit to the temple on Tuesday, to offer traditional clothes to Goddess Kanaka Durga on the occasion of Moolanakshatram, the birth star of the deity.