Bakreshwar Temple West Bengal Full Details

Bakreshwar Temple West Bengal Full Details


  • Locality/village : -Bakreswar
  • State :- West Bengal
  • Country : -India
  • Nearest City/Town :- Suri
  • Best Season To Visit :- All
  • Languages : -Bengali, Hindi & English
  • Temple Timings : -5:00 AM and 10:00 PM.
  • Photography :- Not Allowed.

Bakreshwar Temple West Bengal Full Details

Bakreswar Temple

The Bakreshwar Temple of West Bengal lies on the banks of the Paaphra River in the district of Birbhum, around 24 km from the town of Siuri and 240 km from Kolkata. The temple is renowned for its Oriya-style of architecture. Inside the temple complex are the Mahishmardini and the Vakranath temple. The former has ancient paintings of the goddess, preserved well by the Archaeological Survey of India.

Bakreshwar Temple History

The portion between Devi Sati’s eyebrows- symbolic of her mind – is said to have fallen in this region when Lord Vishnu used his sudarshan chakra on her burnt corpse. A shrine was erected later and was consecrated to the worship of Shaivaite forces.

Said to be one of the most powerful Shakti peethas, Bakreshwar (also called Vakreshwar) , the idol worshipped is Devi Mahishmardini (destroyer of Mahishasur) who is protected by the Bhairav Vakranath. The Phaphra River is said to be the Remover of Sins. This region is known particularly for its scenic beauty. There are seven hot springs surrounding the region- Agni Kund, Brahma Kund, Surya Kund, Saubhagya Kund, Amrita Kund, Kheer Kund, Jibat Kund and Vairav Kund, and each is associated with a ShivLinga. The ShivLingas can be found close to every spring. The Mahamuni Ashtabhakta is said to have found enlightenment here after bathing in the Phaphra.

There is a popular myth surrounding how the place got its present name. It is said that once two renowned munis or sages called Subrita and Lomas received an invitation to participate in the swayamvar of goddess Lakshmi. When Rishi Lomas was received first, Rishi Subrita was ferocious with anger: an anger that ultimately ended up twisting his nerves into eight folds, which eventually earned him the name of Ashtabakra.

Disfigured and disillusioned, Rishi Ashtabakra decided to perform penance for his sin – sages were supposed to overcome weakening emotions like anger- and proceeded to Kashi to pray to Lord Shiva. On reaching Kashi, he was informed that he would have to travel eastwards to a place called Gupt Kashi and then begin meditating. Rishi Ashtabakra did so, and eventually landed in Bakreshwar where he meditated and chanted prayers in praise of Shiva for ten thousand years. Pleased by his dedication and repentance, Lord Shiva granted him the boon that Rishi Ashtabakra would be worshipped before Lord Shiva to gain Shiva’s love.

On the instructions of the Supreme Lord, Vishwakarma – the architect of the gods – constructed a beautiful temple in honour of the sage. This temple came to be known as the Bakreshwar Shakti Peetha and abounds in legends of the sage.

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Bakreshwar Temple Deity

Mahishmardini or Devi Mahishasurmardini is depicted as a ten-handed mother,  seated on a ferocious lion, slaying Mahishasur –the buffalo demon. In honour of this form of Devi Durga, a hymn called the ‘Mahishasur Mardini Stotram’ is sung everyday at the temple after the Prabhat and Sandhy Aratis, the words to which are:

Ayi Shata-Khanndda Vikhannddita-Runndda Vitunnddita-Shunnda Gaja-adhipate

Ripu-Gaja-Ganndda Vidaaranna-Canndda Paraakrama-Shunndda Mrga adhipate |

Nija-Bhuja-Danndda Nipaatita-Khanndda Vipaatita-Munndda Bhatta- adhipate

Jaya Jaya He Mahissaasura-Mardini Ramya-Kapardini Shaila-Sute.

Roughly translated, this reads as:

Salutations to the Conquerer of the Enemy’s elephants who cut off their trunks and heads, and the headless bodies into  a hundred pieces,

Whose lion fiercely tore asunder the faces of the powerful elephants of the Enemies,

Who felled the heads of demons Chanda and Munda with the weapons in Her hands and conquered the Warriors,

Victory to You, the Destroyer of the Demon Mahishasura,  You with the beautiful Locks of hair, Daughter of the Mountains.

Bakreshwar Temple Timing

Monday – Friday: 5.00 AM – 10.00 PM ,

Saturday: 5.00 AM -10.00 PM ,

Sunday: 5.00 AM – 10.00 PM ,

Public Holidays: 5.00 AM – 10.00 PM.

Bakreshwar Temple Festivals

On Shivratri, a grand fair is organised around the Bakreshwar Shakti peeth by the management committee. Girls fast the entire day to attain a husband like Shiva and end the fast with an offering of fruits, sweets, milk and bel leaves to the Lord. The fair has recreational activities like rides for children along with devotional music concerts and storytelling.

Bakreshwar Temple How  To Reach

Bakreswar Temple by Road

There are plenty of private and public transportation options available for travel to Birbhum from all major cities including Kolkata. The Panagarh-Moregram Expressway linking Grand Trunk Road (NH 2) with NH 5 cuts across the district. Apart from this, there are several other entry points for the place as well. Regular bus services from Kolkata, Siliguri and other cities connect Birbhum to all the districts in West Bengal.

Bakreswar Temple by Train

The nearest railway station is Birbhum. Birbhum is very well connected to various major cities by railways. The Howrah-Sahibganj circle of the Eastern Railway passes through this district while the junction at Nalhati connects Birbhum to Azimganj in Murshidabad district.

Bakreswar Temple by Air

The nearest airport is the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose airport in Kolkata. On getting down at Kolkata, you could take a private vehicle, a bus or train to Birbhum which is at a distance of 190 Kms.

Local Transport at Birbhum

As for the local transport, there are bus services, auto rickshaws and taxis that make traveling easy. Apart from this, the entire district is covered by local trains that connect all the major divisions of Birbhum. Ahmadpur, Dubrajpur, Rampurhat, Asansol, Murarai, Sainthia, Bolpur Shantiniketan, Nalhati, Siuri, Chatra, Rajgram and Swadinpur, each of the towns has a railway station, linking the entire region of Birbhum.

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