Monday, 28 February 2022

Paralai Murugan Temple

Paralai Murugan Temple
Paralai Murugan Temple (Photo credit: Google Street View)
Paralai Murugan Kovil (Tamil: பராளை முருகன் கோவில்; Sinhala: පරාලේ මුරුගන් කෝවිල) is a Hindu temple located in Chulipuram in Jaffna District, Sri Lanka.

Sangamitta Bodhiya
Although this site is presently a Hindu shrine, Buddhists believe that the Sangamitta Bodhi, the old Bo tree located in this temple premises is a historical tree linked to Sangamitta Theri, the daughter of Indian Emperor Asoka [(c.268-232 B.C.) Ragupathy, 1987; Wijebandara, 2014]. According to chronicles, Sangamitta Theri landed at the Dambakola Patuna port (Jambukola port) in Sri Lanka with the Sri Maha Bodhi Sapling during the reign of King Devanampiyatissa [(247-207 B.C.) Wijebandara, 2014]. This Bodhi sapling was venerably received by Devanampiyatissa and brought it in a procession to Anuradhapura along the ancient route that was fallen through the present Paralai area (Wijebandara, 2014). It is believed that the Sangamitta Bo tree on the premises of the Paralai Murugan Temple was planted as a souvenir tree when the Sri Maha Bodhi sapling was brought to Anuradhapura on this route (Wijebandara, 2014).

Hindu shrine
The Hindu shrine and the pond at this site are said to be about 300 years old (Wijebandara, 2014). A poet named Sittatambi Pulavar (1700-1764 A.D.) and a local physician named Vairamuttu Arumugam (1822-1917 A.D.) are said to have involved in the development and administration of this temple (Wijebandara, 2014).

A protected monument
The old Bo tree known as Sangamitta Bodhiya at the premises of Murugan Kovil situated in Paralai village in the Grama Niladhari Division No. J/174 of Chulipuram East in Walikamam West Divisional Secretary’s Division is an archaeological protected monument, declared by a government notification published on 1 February 2023.

See also

1) Ragupathy, P. 1987. Early settlements in Jaffna, An archaeological survey. Published by Mrs. Thilimalar Ragupathy. Madras. p.51.
2) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka: Extraordinary. No: 2317/57. 1 February 2023. p.9A.
3) Wijebandara, I.D.M., 2014. Yapanaye Aithihasika Urumaya (In Sinhala). Published by the editor. ISBN-978-955-9159-95-7. pp.132-135.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 11 April 2023


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