Vaikom Sree Mahadeva Temple

Panachikkal Bhagavathi

To the south side of the temple yard we could witness a Shakteya Sanidhya called Panachikkal Bhagavathi. The origin of it is described in legends as follows:   

The great sage Agasthya with many Maharshis was returning after worshipping Vaikkathappan on a Pradosha day. A Gandharva Kanyaka named Neelakundala was travelling with her parivar then. Being very proud she laughed at the Maharshis and even the Maheswara. The angry Agasthya cursed her, “Be a Rakshasi”. When she repented and asked for Shapa Moksha (redemption) the Maharshi said “After 86 years you will get Shapa Moksha (redemption) here in Vyaghrapadapuram”.

Sthambha Vinayaka
Sthambha Vinayaka was in charge of the temple protection from the day Parasurama left for pilgrimage. One day the cruel Rakshasi came there troubling the people and animals. The people approached Vyaghrapada Muni. He remembered the old story of Rakshasi and prayed to Sthambha Vinayaka who ordered His servant Bhadrayush to deal with her. With a Thrissul he cut the Rakshasi into three pieces. All the three pieces were then transformed into the forms of three Devis and they praised Vaikkathappan and Sthambha Ganapathi for granting Moksha.
At the request of Sthamba Vinayaka Vaikkathappan granted them each a place. The middle piece is remaining here in the southern part of the temple yard and known as Panachikkal Bhagavati. The other Devies were sent tot Cherikkumel in the south and Koottummel in the north.

The Sarppa Sanidhya

To the south of temple yard the Sarppas (Snake Gods) are worshipped. Rituals and poojas are performed here only once a year. There was a pipal tree and a surrounding elevated platform, which was destroyed some years ago. However a new tree has been planted and the platform rebuilt in recent years. Previously Pampumekkad Illom was in charge of the poojas. Now after so many changes the Parampur Bhattathiri of Thiruvalla is having the right to do the poojas in this Sarppa Sanidhya. In the Malayalam month of Kumba (Feb-March) special poojas for the Sarppas are performed nowadays.