Envis Centre, Ministry of Environment & Forest, Govt. of India

Printed Date: Monday, July 4, 2022

Bahucharaji

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

Becharaji or Bahucharaji is a temple town in Mehsana district of Gujarat. The town is associated with Hindu goddess Bahuchara Mata worshipped as Bala. It is one of the three Shakti Peethas worshipped in Gujarat, the other being Ambaji and Pavagadh. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Temple of Bahuchara Mata is located in mid Bechraji town. Bahuchara Mata is a Hindu goddess. She was a daughter of a Charan by the name of Bapal dan Detha. She and her sisters were on a journey with a caravan, when a marauder named Bapiya attacked their caravan. It was common practice among charan men and women, if overpowered by their enemies, not to surrender but to kill themselves. Shedding the blood of charan was considered a heinous sin. When Bapiya attacked the caravan, Bahuchara and her sisters announced tragu (self-immolation) and cut their breasts. Legend tells that Bapiya was cursed and became impotent. The curse was lifted only when he worshiped Bahuchara Mata by dressing and acting like a woman. Today Bahuchara Mata is considered patroness of the hijra community in India, and worshipped by them and many other communities in Gujarat. Though many of her followers believe in non-violence and consider killing of all animals and creatures a sin, historically Bahuchara Mata was, like many Hindu gods and goddesses, the recipient of annual animal sacrifices. 

 

 

 

As per another folklore, during the exile period of Pandavas, Arjun took disguise of the eunuch in Bahucharaji temple and presumed the character of Brihanalla. Since then, eunuchs have been visiting this temple. They sit in the temple complex and do not enter in the main temple ground. Legend states that before dressing up as eunuch, Arjun hid his bow and arrow in Sami tree inside Bahucharaji temple. Hence, during the festival of Dussehra Sami tree is worshiped by devotees. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shri Bahucharaji Mataji's temple is also considered as one of the Shakti Piths. It is believed that Sati's hands had fallen at this place. This place is a sidha Shakti Pith. In this complex of religious importance, there are three main temples viz. Adhya Sthan, Madhya Sthan and Main Temple. In the main temple, gold studded Bala Yantra made of crystal is being worshiped. Among the ten main goddesses in the whole universe, Shri Balatripur Sundari Shri Bahucharma is a sidh shakti. From religious point this place has the same importance as other religious places like Ambaji, Pavagadh, Dhwarka, Somnath, Palitana, Girnar and Dakor. 

 

 

 

Bahuchara Mata is shown as a woman who carries a sword on her top right, a text of scriptures on her top left, the abhay hasta mudra (“showering of blessings”) on her bottom right, and a trident on her bottom left. She is seated on a rooster. During Solanki dynasty period in Gujarat, rooster was a symbol on the state's flag. Devotees of Mataji consider rooster sacred and worship it. 

 

 

 

Shri Bahucharaji Mata is kuldevi for many castes in Gujarat and they all come here with devotion and reverence and carry out chaul kriya (tonsorial ceremonies) of their children. 

 

 

 

On special days like Chaitra and ashadhi Purnima (full moon day) temple trust organizes fairs and celebration. Devotee sings sacred song called “Anand no Garbo” for bahuchraji to fulfill their wishes and needs. On these days a large number of devotees visit and take part in the fair with full of joy and faith. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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