Paragraph on Ucchi Pillayar Shrine

Here is your paragraph on Ucchi Pillayar Shrine:

Thiruchirapalli is a famous pilgrimage centre, because of its temple dedi­cated to Lord Ganesha situated on top of a rock hill and another two temples one for God Siva and the other Lord Vishnu – close by.


In Uchchi Pillayar Koil (Vinayaka Temple), image of Lord Ganesha in the Rock Temple has a depression on its face which bears out a legend.

The Rock Temple as its name implies, is built on a solid mass of rock surrounded by a fort. Dominating the landscape, it is 83 metres high and is the pride of the city. From some angles the rock looks like a great bull. Hence it is also known as Rishabachalam (rishaba : bull). A steep climb of 434 steps cuts into the tunnel through the rock leading to the Ganesha temple – the Uchchi Pillair Koil.

There is an interesting legend connected to the origin of the Vinayaka temple on the hill top. Sri Rama, the God incarnate, while in exile lost his wife to Ravana, the ten-headed king of Lanka. In the war that followed, Ravana’s brother Vibishana, a great devotee of Rama, helped him in annihilating the king of Lanka his own brother Vibishana succeeded his slain brother to the throne. During the coronation ceremony of Sri Rama, Vibishana was invited to Ayodhya and was presented with a very rare gift – the image of Sri Ranganatha (Lord Vishnu); it was considered rare, as the image was of the swayambu type.

The legend goes that Vibishana was carrying that gift to Lanka and on his way arrived at the River Kaveri near Trichirapalli. It was midday and pujas had to be performed on the idol. He beckoned a Brahmin youth at hand and requested him to bear the image until he returned after a bath in the river. He advised the boy not to place the idol on the ground. But when Vibishana came back from the river he was shocked to see the image left on the ground. To his dismay all his attempts to lift the idol from the ground were futile.


It seemed to have got rooted to the spot. In his anger he slapped the Brahmin boy on the head and the boy ran away to the rock at the summit and stood transformed as Lord Ganesha. Vibishana then prayed to his Lord Ranganathar, only to be told that the Lord desired to remain at the spot, looking towards south to bless all including Vibishana and Lanka. He was advised to get back to his kingdom sans the idol.

Thus were born the Vinyaka temple (Uchchi Pillayar Koil) in Trichy and Sri Ranganathar temple at Sri Rangam.

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