Ancient and dilapidated, these temples are being restored.

A look at a few temples where renovation is on. With consecration scheduled, they look forward to help from devotees and philanthropists to complete work.

The Mahasamprokshanam of Sri Alamelumanga samedha Sri Venkatachalapathy temple at Kagithapattarai also known as Tiruvembanallur is on May 2 between 9 and 10.30 a.m. The rituals begin today with Sudarsana homam at 8 a.m. Tirukalyana Utsavam will be held 6-7.30 p.m. on May 2. Mandalabishekam begins on May 3.

On the road from Sirkazhi to Nagapattinam is located a hamlet called Poonthazhai, 3 km from Akkur junction. About 2 km east of Poonthazhai is Mamakudi, the location of Sri Sivakamasundari samedha Sri Sivalokanathaswami temple. Legend has it that when the Ocean of Milk was churned several sacred objects appeared at various points. Goddess Lakshmi also emerged and the place was called Maakudi. Also referred to as Lakshmipuram and Thirumalgudi, it is north of the Tirukadaiyur Abhirami temple.

Built by the Cholas, the deity of the temple was eulogised by Thirunavukkarasar in Adaivu Thiruthaaandakam. The Valampuramaalai, which sings the praise of Sri Valampuranathar, presiding deity of the Melaperumpallam temple, also mentions Maakudi. Found in a totally dilapidated condition, with weeds and thorny bushes making the place inaccessible, the Sivalokanathar temple was taken up for renovation and balalayam performed in February 2008.

Severe resource crunch dogged the project but the renovation committee, supported by the villagers, has persevered and kumbabishekam has been planned for May 26. Mandalabishekam begins on May 27. Funds are needed to complete work and conduct the consecration. Those who wish to contribute may contact Chidambaram 044-42121402/9940053289 or N. Saminathan, Mamakudi-04364-280836/9443433913 or 04428152533/9840053280.

The 500-year old Sri Ranaganayika samedha Sri Ranganatha Perumal temple at Thiruvidaivasal, a small village in Tiruvarur district, has been renovated and samprokshanam has been slated for May 5, 9-10.15 a.m. Veda parayanam and Prabhanda chanting will take place on May 3,4 and 5. Consecration was last done on June 12, 1960. The temple has separate shrines for the Azhwars, Desikan and Anjaneya.

Tiruvidaivasal Sri Ranganatha Perumal Temple Seva Samiti and the devotees of the village have decided to create a corpus fund to facilitate daily puja and conduct of festivals. The Samiti welcomes contributions for the Rs. 16-lakh project. Donations in the formof DD and cheques may be drawn in favour the Samiti and sent to No.12, M.A. Flat, Shankarlal Jain Street, Nehru Nagar, Chromepet, Chennai 600044. Phone 22230145/9940032539 (Dorairajan) or 94450 03027 (T.K.Parthasarathy).

The story behind the Tirukameswara temple at Kali, a village near Mayiladuturai is interesting. Cursed to be born as a cow, Parvati worshipped Siva, who blessed her with human form and she grew up as the daughter of Bharatarishi. The divine couple reunited in wedlock at Tirumanancheri. Among the guests was Kali, accompanied by brother Srinivasa. Charmed by the picturesque surroundings of Kali, which she saw while doing pradakshina of Siva and Parvati, Kali decided to make the village her abode. It is said that Siva as Tirukameswarar, accompanied by goddess Abhirami, gave her darshan as just wedded couple.

The ancient Lingam dates back to the Chola period. The beauty of Balasukambigai as a shy bride, head tilted to one side is bewitching. There are shrines for Vinayaka, Bhairavar, Navagraha and Surya apart from niches in the outer prakaram for Dakshinamurthi, Subramanya and Gajalakshmi.

The temple is in a dilapidated state with cracks on all the walls and the ceiling. A renovation plan has been drawn up by the Arulmigu Abirami Paripalana Trust. A website has been hosted. Balalayam was performed early this month and consecration has been scheduled for October 27. Devotees and philanthropists may contact S. Sankaran, Managing Trustee, Arulmigu Abirami Paripalana Trust, at 9840410079 or

Of great archaeological interest is the Siva temple at Ramanayakkan Pettai in Vaniyambadi, Vellore district. Once upon a time, the place was known as Chaturvedimangalam.

Located in the scenic surroundings on the banks of the Palar, the Tirupal Iswarar temple speaks of the Chola’s aesthetic sense. The lingam has eight tiers. Locals say that a deluge washed away part of the lingam and whatever remained was installed on a cement platform and worshipped. The temple has a navagraha shrine where devotees offer prayers and special pujas.

The Nandi gets special attention on Pradosham days. Mahasivaratri is celebrated on a grand scale with a full-fledged puja regimen. The temple has inscriptions and sculptures revealing historical details, which the ASI should pursue, the villagers feel. For details contact 24901025.