August 10, 2011
A colleague had told me about Togarsi. I was passing through this pilgrimage village and decided to visit the temple situated on a hillock. The temple is ancient, probably 800 to 1000 years old. The tiled structure is recent addition, it serves as a mini hall for religious functions. Morning pooja was in progress, I could see the deity while poojaris did Aarati. As a part of the pooja, visitors present were allowed to do Aarati to the diety.
Kalyani, temple and the Gopura.
Togarsi Mallayyaswamy temple is managed by two Mathas; Malehiremath and Panchavanigematha. Normally temples are managed by one matha but Togarsi temple is managed by two mathas.
This is Malehirematha
...and Panchavanigematha. The two white elephants guarding the door could be of stone plastered with a thick coat of lime.
I'm not sure if this Gopura was newly constructed or an existing one was renovated. Construction activities were still going on.
The person in white shirt is a poojari in the temple. Houses of temple staff flank the path leading up the hill. The temple is just halfway up the hill. Beyond the temple is jungle. An early morning morning walk in the jungle could be an interesting experience ...fresh cool air, a soft sun,light, sounds of birds singing, peacocks calling some far away.
The temple street is a straight line flanked by tiled roof houses with teak wood columns. I wish I had seen Togarsi 10 years back, it would be like seeing a part of Dharmastala. In this age of mobile phones, glaring boards mars the peaceful ambiance of this village.
Togarsi Coordinates: 14°27'7"N 75°12'15"E