2017uku-07-04 (1), Oondreeswarar Temple, Poondi, Thiruvallur
2017uku-07-04 (1), Oondreeswarar Temple, Poondi, Thiruvallur

Oondreeswarar Temple, Poondi, Thiruvallur

Date built:
Deity: Oondreeswarar
Architectural style: Dravidian architecture
Major festivals
Locale: Poondi
District:: Thiruvallur
Address: Oondreeswarar TemplePoondi Reservoir Post, Via Tiruvallur
Thiruvallur – 602023
Phone +91 44 -2763 9725 / 2763 9895  +91 99432 09387
 Oondreeswarar Temple (also called Poondi Temple) is a Hindu temple dedicated to the Lord Shiva, located in Poondi, a village in Tiruvallur District in the South Indian state of Tamilnadu. Presiding Deity is a Swayambu Moorthy called as Oondreeswarar / Aadharadhandeswarar and Mother is called as Minnoli Amman / Kanivai Mozhi Nayaki / Dhathgowri Ambal. Urchavar is Somaskandar. Sthala Vriksham is Ilandai. Theerthams are Kuchasthalai River and Kayilaya Theertham. The temple is located on the Northern banks of Poondi reservoir on the Thiruvallur – Thiruthani Road.
Before construction of Poondi reservoir, the temple was at Tiruvalampudur (a village submerged in the reservoir) and a new temple was reconstructed in the present place called Poondi. The temple complex covers an area of one acre and all its shrines are enclosed with concentric rectangular walls. The temple has a number of shrines, with those of Oondreswarar and his consort Minnoli Amman being the most prominent.

The presiding deity is revered in the 7th century Tamil Saiva canonical work, the Thevaram, written by Tamil saint poets known as the Nayanmars and classified as Paadal Petra Sthalam. It is considered as the 17th among the Devara Paadal Petra Sthalams located in Thondai region. The temple has three daily rituals at various times from 6:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., and four yearly festivals on its calendar. Brahmotsavam festival during the Tamil month of Vaikasi (May – June) is the most prominent festival celebrated in the temple.

Temple Opening Time

The temple is open from 6.00 a.m. to 11.00 a.m. and from 4.00 p.m. to 8.00 p.m. As the security of the temple resides within the temple campus, devotees can worship the Lord any time.


Those facing problems in marriage proposals, vision troubles pray to Lord and Mother for remedy. Those having no hold in life, depressed, suffering due to lack of developments in professions are advised to pray to Lord sincerely for a paradigm shift in life. To those concluding that life is but utter dark, Ambica shows the light and instill in them self-confidence. Lord and Mother in this temple drag them from despair. Hence, the temple is greatly praised as Nambikkai Koil – Trust Temple. Devotees perform abishek to Lord and Mother with honey offering Vastras.


Sundarar, an 8th Century Tamil Saivite poet, venerated Oondreeswarar in ten verses in Thevaram, compiled as the Ninth Thirumurai. As the temple is revered in Thevaram, it is classified as Paadal Petra Sthalam, one of the 275 temples that find mention in the Saiva canon. This is the 17th Devaram Paadal Petra Shiva Sthalam in Thondai Nadu.

The temple priests perform the puja (rituals) during festivals and on a daily basis. The temple rituals are performed three times a day; Kalasanthi at 8:00 a.m, Uchikalam at 12:00 a.m & Sayarakshai at 6:00 p.m. Each ritual comprises four steps: Abishekam (sacred bath), Alangaram (decoration), neivethanam (food offering) and Deepa aradanai (waving of lamps) for Oondreeswarar and Minnoli Ambal.

Unlike other Shiva temples, anointing with oil is not performed in the temple. There are weekly rituals like Somavaram (Monday) and Sukravaram (Friday), fortnightly rituals like Pradosham, and monthly festivals like Ammavasai (new moon day), kiruthigai, Pournami (full moon day) and Sathurthi. Brahmotsavam during the Tamil month of Vaikasi (May – June) is the most important festivals of the temple. Masi Mahasivarathri in February-March, Aipasi Annabishekam in October – November, Tirukarthikai in November – December are the other major festivals celebrated in this temple.


Legend / Local stories


Saint Sundarar married Paravai Nachiyar in Tiruvarur. He also married Sangili Nachiyar in Thiruvottriyur who was a staunch Shiva devotee and promised her that he won’t leave her. Lord Shiva was witness to the marriage and the promise. Sundarar breached his promise and proceeded to Thiruvarur. While he was crossing the borders of Thiruvottriyur, he lost his vision. He understood that he was punished for violating his promise and appealed to Lord Shiva. Lord did not respond to the prayer.

Sundarar proceeded to Tiruvarur facing all struggles and came to this place on the way and repeated his appeal to Lord for vision. Lord Shiva kept mum but Sundarar was unrelenting. He asked the Lord whether he was really there and if so “give me my vision.”  Lord, though sympathized with his fond devotee, gave Sundarar just a walking stick (Oondru in Tamil) saying that he was there only and he could proceed with the help of the stick. Hence he came to be known as Oondreeswarar.

Sundarar demanded that the Lord should grace him as a friend but the Lord was unyielding. Sundarar became angry and argued with the Lord loudly but in vain. In a fit of anger, Sundarar threw the walking stick granted to him which hit the right horn of Nandhi breaking it. Sundarar proceeded sadly towards Kancheepuram. In this temple, Sundarar holding a pole adjacent to Nandi with the broken horn are found.

Minnoli Ambal:

Mother Minnoli Ambal was ready to accompany blind Sundarar struggling to walk with his stick but Lord Shiva prevented her from doing so.  Indicating this event, we see the left leg of Mother in a forward motion.  Mother told Sundarar that life goes in accordance with one’s good or evil deeds.  “Though you have lost your vision now, you will regain it shortly with the grace of the Lord” She assured Sundarar. She guided Sundarar on his way to Kanchipuram from this place, Parvati appeared as a lightning in front of him, giving the name of Minnoli Nayagi (Minnoli indicated lightning in Tamil). Hence, Mother is worshipped as Minnoli Ambal and Kanivai Mozhi Nayaki – Mother with assuring words.

Photo Gallery

How to Reach:

This Shivasthalam Temple is located at about 24 Kms from Thiruvallur, 55 Kms from Chennai, 59 Kms from Chennai Central Railway Station, 57 Kms from Egmore Railway Station, 37 Kms from Thiruthani, 41 Kms from Arakkonam, 37 Kms from Poonamallee, 24 Kms from Thiruvalangadu and 57 Kms from Chennai International Airport.

By Road:

Bus facilities are available from Tiruvallur and Chennai – Poonamallee. Town bus services Nos. T-41 and T-52 (via Neyveli Koot road) are available from Thiruvallur bus stand to go to Poondi. The temple is very near to the bus stop. Another way to reach the temple is to travel by bus going to Uthukottai and get down at Neyveli Koot road and go by auto or walk about 2 Kms to Poondi to reach the temple.

By Train:

Nearest Railway Station is located at Thiruvallur. Nearest Major Railway Stations are located at Arakkonam, Chennai Central Railway Station and Egmore Railway Station.

By Air:

Nearest Airport is located at Chennai.

Contact Details

Oondreeswarar Temple
Poondi Reservoir Post, Via Tiruvallur
Thiruvallur – 602023
Phone: +91 44 -2763 9725 / 2763 9895
Mobile: +91 99432 09387

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