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Baba Taraknath - The Shivalingam At Serampore

Tarakeshwar Temple, West Bengal
Tarakeshwar Temple, West Bengal
Tarakeshwar- one of the Shivalingams, is a prime place to visit in the Hoogly district of West Bengal. The 1729 built temple by Raja Bharamalla is situated in a small town 58 kms away from the busiest city- Kolkata. This typical Bengali architecture of the 18th century is known to be the greatest Shaiva sect of Bengal. The devotee of Shiva- Vishnu Das, once to prove his innocence held a hot iron bar in his palms. Later his brother found a place deep in the woods where every day the cattle emptied their milk which was then revealed as a Shivalingam in Vishnu Das's dream.

The holy place of Baba Taraknath, through the years is observed to be the most visited places on the auspicious occasions of 'Shivaratri' and 'Gajan'. Crowds from all over the country visit here to seek the blessings of Lord Shiva.

The abode of Shiva possesses an 'atchala' building bearing a 'Natyamandir'. The entrance of the temple holds a congregation hall with the shrines of Maa Kali and Laxmi-Narayan hosted by the premises. The temple consists of a veranda that bears the Lingam at the centre with three arched openings on the either sides. The 25 feet squared and 30 feet high marble paved floor about has a railing on it.

Each Bengali month of Shravan and Baishakh sees thousands of devotees approaching from faraway places to seek blessings of Baba Taraknath. The town observes major shopping festivals and fairs during this season.

Being the nearest attractions of the town, the nearby cities –Magra, Gopdanga, Chautara, Balgarh provide the pilgrims with necessary accommodation facilities and comforts. Besides there are many other affordable lodges, hotels and rest houses to serve the pilgrims coming from afar.

Buses, trains, taxis serve as an easy mode of conveyance to the visitors. Easy to and fro of taxis from the nearest airport, Dum-dum helps as an addition to the number of pilgrims every year.