Shree Govindajee Temple, Imphal, Manipur
|Date built:||Original in 1846, rebuilt in 1876|
|Major festivals||Janmashtami and Kang(Rathajatra)|
Shree Govindajee Temple is the largest Hindu, Vaishnav temple in Imphal city in Manipur. It is located next to the palace of the former rulers of the then Manipur Kingdom. The temple is simple in design with two gold plated domes, a paved court and a large, raised mantapa or congregation hall. The central chamber of the garbhagriha (sanctum sanctorum) has the main deity of Govindaji, stated to be the incarnation of Lord Krishna, and his consort Radha. In the other two chambers of the sanctum, on either side of the main deity, images deified are of Balabhadra and Krishna on one side, and images of Jagannath, Subhadra and Balabhadra on the other side. The temple was originally built in 1846 during the reign of Maharaja Nara Singh and rebuilt by Maharaja Chandrakriti in 1876.
The temple management was earlier with the former king as per Article II of the Manipur Merger Agreement of 1949 when Manipur became a part of India after independence. However, on popular demand by the public, it is now managed by a Board with members drawn from the priest community and important people of the city.The Chief Minister of the state is the Board’s president.
Legend / Local stories
Maharaja Nara Singh (1844–50 AD) of the Manipur kingdom commissioned the temple on 16 January 1846 and dedicated it to Shree Govindaji, which was their royal deity. The temple and the deities were substantially damaged during an earthquake of 1868. Consequently, the temple was rebuilt to its original design during the reign of Maharaja Chandrakriti (1859-1886) and was consecrated on 26 April 1876.However, during the Anglo Manipur war of 1891 the idols of the temple were moved to Kongma. In 1908, after the Maharaja Churchand Singh took up residence at his new palace the idols were also moved and reconsecrated in the present temple.
It is also said that ( Ching-Thang Khomba|Maharaja Jai Singh ) or Bhagya Chandra Karta (1763–1798), who was an ardent devotee of Lord Krishna, received an epiphany from the Lord to build a temple for him. Accordingly, he formally initiated the carving of the idol of the Lord Govindaji, in 1776, which was then completed and consecrated in November 1779 on the full moon day in a temple built by him in his palace. On this occasion Ras Lila was performed for five days at Raas Mandal Pukhri at Langthabal
How to Reach:
Shree Govindajee Temple is located in Imphal (in its East district), the capital of the Indian state of Manipur, in the precincts of the royal palace.Imphal is accessible by road and air services. National Highway 39 (India) connects with Dimapur (Nagaland) on the north and with Myanmar on the east. It is connected to Silchar in Assam by National Highway 53 (India). National Highway 150 (India) connects with Mizoram. The nearest rail link is at Dimapur, 215 kilometres (134 mi) away, from where regular bus services operate to Imphal. Air services operate to Imphal from New Delhi, Kolkata, Guwahati and Silchar.