Photograph Courtesy: WIkimedia COmmons

Photograph Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

Maharishi Valmiki is one of the most prominent people in Hinduism. Known as the first Sanskrit poet, Rishi Valmiki’s greatest work is considered to be the famous epic Ramayana. The famous Indian epic is dated between 5th century BCE and 1st century BCE and consists of 24,000 shlokas and 7 cantos or kandas. For the uninitiated, Ramayana tells the story of Prince Rama of Ayodhya who defeats the demon king Ravana of Lanka to being back his abducted wife Sita. It is believed that Rama met Valmiki during his exile period making him Ram’s contemporary. Another great contribution of Valmiki is that he provided shelter to Sita in his hermitage after Rama banished her. It was in this hermitage that Rama and Sita’s twins Lava and Kusha were born. As such, Maharishi Valmiki is a revered figure in Hinduism because he is responsible for the portrayal of Rama as a man of benevolence. Valmiki Jayanti falls on full moon day (Purnima) during the month of Ashwin which corresponds to the month of September-October in the Gregorian calendar. Valmiki Jayanti 2017 date is October 5. The day is also referred to as Pragat Diwas. India is home to several Valmiki temples but the most prominent one is perhaps the one in Chennai. As we get closer to Valmiki Jayanti 2017, here’s a look at some interesting facts about the Maharishi Vamiki Temple in Chennai. ALSO SEE 5 famous Rama temples in India every devotee must visit Also Read - Fire Breaks Out in Chennai as People Burn Crackers in Response to PM's Call, No Deaths or Injuries Reported

The Maharishi Valmiki temple in Thiruvanmiyur in Chennai is believed to be around 1300 years old. It stands on the East Coast Road in the aptly named Valmiki Nagar. Also Read - Viral: Police Dresses up as Coronavirus to Create Awareness in Chennai | Watch

Legend has it that after writing the epic Ramayana, Maharishi Valmiki rested at the spot where the Valmiki temple now stands. Also Read - Trending News Today March 16, 2020: IIT-Madras Scholar Pretends to Have Coronavirus After Being 'Dared' by Friends, Let Off With A Strict Warning

Every year, the Brahmatosavam festival is held with great devotion here in the month of March. The celebrations are marked by a special pooja. Poojas or prayer sessions are also conducted every month on the full moon day.

The Valmiki temple now falls under the supervision of another prominent temple called the Maruntheeshwarar temple which was constructed during the Chola reign. It is believed that sage Valmiki visited the Marundeeswarar temple to worship Lord Shiva following which the region was named Thiruvalmikiyur which gradually changed to Thiruvanmiyur.

So, next time you visit Chennai, do check out this historic temple which pays tribute to one of India’s greatest sages and poets ever.

How to reach Valmiki Temple

Valmiki Temple in Thiruvanmiyur is located just 4 km from Mylapore. Chennai Central Railway Station is the nearest major railhead. Road connectivity to the temple is pretty good and several buses ply between Mylapore/Chennai Central Railway Station to Thiruvanmiyur.

Address: Address: 1, E Coast Rd, Lalitha Nagar, Thiruvanmiyur, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600041