Since the day it was reported that the Venugopala Swamy temple resurfaced in the backwaters of Cauvery 2002 due to drought in the Mysore region, I was very keen on visiting the temple. There was no one who could give us the right directions to the place and one of our expedition to the place failed as the locals were also clueless about the whereabouts of the temple. I got an opportunity last year to visit the temple and my long wait was well rewarded.
The Gopalakrishna temple complex is huge and magnificent. The whole temple is being relocated on the banks of the backwaters of KRS in Kannambadi village. This divine and painstaking work is the initiative of Shri Hari Khoday who has spent crores of rupees on this project. Thanks to him, today we have a wonderful opportunity of exploring the temple and seeing it in its original glory at a picturesque spot. It is a wonder how people could have overlooked the fact that the temple would be submerged when the dam was built.
The temple remained submerged for 70 years and since the temple was built in stone, it has remained intact to the day of relocation! Every single stone is marked and moved to the right place and where necessary new stones have replaced the damaged stones.
The temple was built in the 12th century in Kannambadi village and the architecture is a mixture of Dravidian and Chalukyan style. A huge open air courtyard forms the outer fort and this leads into another smaller open air courtyard and in the middle is the temple with a stunning Gopura. The Garbha Gruha / Sanctum Sanctorum is ready for the installation of the idol. An oil lamp lit in the Garbha Gruha seems to be waiting to throw light on the new idol.
The original idol was taken by the villagers when Kannambadi village was submerged and they have installed the idol in the relocated village known as Krishnarajasagar village.
Work is almost complete and I am waiting to go back there and spend some time in the temple. The expanse of water can be seen from the Garbha Gruha.
The ceiling of the temple is intricately carved.
Stones with inscriptions written during the construction of the temple are also preserved and displayed. It is written in Hale / old kannada.
The beautiful temple is surrounded by water on all the three sides. Sunset is a wonderful experience here.
Many different types of water and shore birds are spotted in this region like little cormorant, terns, egrets, ducks, geese, and so on.
Type of place: Ancient temple
Situated: Kannambadi Village, Mandya District, Karnataka
Distance: 30 Km from Mysore
Transport: Well connected by road