Lord Krishna

Temple History

Kanipura Sri Gopalakrishna Temple is situated eight miles due north of Kasaragod town. According to local religious beliefs, the Krishnashila Idol of the Lord Bala Gopalkrishna, having the features of a child, which was worshipped by Lord Krishna’s foster mother Yashoda, is believed to have been presented by the almighty Lord Krishna himself to the sage Kanva Maharshi in Dwaparayuga, who in turn installed the same at its present location where the temple exists.

In the 10th Century, this temple was renovated by King Jayasimha of Kadamba Danasty, whose capital was Kumbla and even the administration of his Kingdom was being done in the name of Kanipura Sri Gopalkrishna. The coronation of Kumbla Rajas was being solemnized at Kanipura Sri Gopalkrishna Temple.

As per legends Kanipura Temple was the original seat of the Raja of Kumbla, which was later on shifted to Maipady (Mayapuri). Even to this day one can see the ruins of the fort at Kumbla or Kotekar and Arikadi, which bears testimony to the political importance of Kumbla in the days gone by. Kanipura is only a derivative of Kanvapura. Tradition ascribes the Prathishtah of Sri Gopalkrishna Moorthi of the temple to Kanva Maharshi form whom the name of the place is derived. The other place names such as Kannur (also called Kanva Peetah) within two miles to the east of the temple and the well known Kanva Teertha of the Pejavar Mutt fame near Manjeshwar, also are indicative of the faith of the people in the many legends relating to the association of the sage Kanva with this temple and the place around if.

The legend of the Sthala-Purana states that having installed the idol, which is an image of Balagopalakrishna in jet black granite, an idol which was being worshipped by the fostermother Yashoda, the sage performed Adhishekam to the deity with the Manthrodaka which he had saved in his Kamandalu during ages past; the Manthrodaka then flowed out as a stream, grew into a river and ultimately joined the western sea within a short distance form the temple. The river is "Kumbha Hole", (Hole means river) also known as the Kumbhini. The town as well came to be known as Kumbla form this.

The temple, for which extensive repairs and renovations have been carried out, is situated in the heart of the town of Kumbla at the foot of an elevated hill which rises in front of it, with the river Kumbha Hole flanking if on the north. If Srimadanantheshwara, and Sri Vinayaka of Madhur are the deities of the daily worship of the senior Raja of Kumbla, the patta Abhisheka or coronation of the senior Raja would in ancient days take place in Kanipura Sri Gopalakrishna temple. The Abhisheka of the Yuvaraja of Kumbla used to take place at Srimath Udaneshwara Temple of perdala, which in Kumbla Seema is only next in importance to the above four temples.

Kanipura Sri Gopalakrishna’s praises have been sung by Parthi Subba, the father of Yakshagana, along with those of Madhur Sri Mahaganapathi, in several songs. It was in Kumbla that Parthi Subba was born and bred up (in about 1740 to 1800 A.D) and composed all his yakshagana prasangas which earned for him the title of the father of Thenkku Thittu Yakshagana. He was in the line of the Paatalies of the Kumbla temple, and at the Moodappa seva in Madhur temple in 1797 had presented a copper "Dhara Battal" to that temple inscribed with his name in Kannada, which is presently in use at the Madhur temple.

The festival at the Kumbla temple which lasts five days every year commences with Dhwaja Arohanam on the Makara Sankramana day every year. The festival comes to an end with the idol coming back after being dipped in the pond about three kilometers from the temple premises and the holy flag (Kodi) coming down. Popularly known as ‘’Kumble Bedi’’, because of the display of crackers done in front of the idol. The idol is sat on the Banyan tree platform and the display extends to almost one and half hours. People from different parts of north Kerala and South Canara assemble for the festival. ’’Bali’’ is the typical way of carrying the idol overhead of a poojary. Who goes around the temple with the idol decorated with flower and ornaments which is never to be too light. The poojary moves as per the taala of chendamelam and vadyam. First he moves with one of his hands supporting the idol on his head and the other hand swinging.In the end he removes the support and moves quickly around the temple.


Additional Information

Is it stated that Sri Gopalkrishna Temple has the sanctity of over three Yugas of Treta, Dwapara and Kali Yug. The temple was established by Maharshi Kanwa. Believers ascribe to the temple the same sanctity and holiness as that of Sri Krishna Temple at Guruvayoor and also to that of Sri Krishna Temple situated at Udupi in Karnataka. Several Lakhs of Devotees offer prayers at the Temple regularly.

Kumbla is a small town located 11 km north of Kasaragod town and 12 km south of Uppala in Kasaragod District, Kerala. From Mangaluru International Airport Kanipura Sri Gopalakrishna Temple is 48.2 KM. It is 12.7 KM from Kasaragod Railway Station, 300 m from Kumbla railway station and only 170 m from Kumbla Bus Stand

  • 5.00 to 13.00, 17.30 to 20.00
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