Karni Mata (The Rat Temple)

Karni Mata Deshnok

Karni Mata Deshnok

     The famous temple of goddess Karni mata is located at village Deshnok about 30 km from Bikaner in Rajasthan. It is known as the rat temple. Karni mata was a Hindu sage born in the Charan caste. She is worshiped as the incarnation of the goddess Durga by her followers.

         She is an official deity of the royal family of Jodhpur and Bikaner. She lived an ascetic life and was widely revered during her own lifetime. At the request of the Maharaja of Bikaner, she laid the foundation stones for two important forts in the region. The most famous of her temples is the temple in the small town of Deshnok, near Bikaner

Karni Mata Temple Deshnok

Karni Mata Temple

Karni Mata Temple Gate

Karni Mata Temple Gate

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        The temple is famous for its black rats, which are treated as sacred and given protection in the temple. They are called “Kaba”. In the temple many pots are placed to feed the rats. There is a provision of regular budget for feeding them. People faith that they will be blessed if they see a white rat in the temple. It is a wondrous temple. Even when the entire region was in the grip of plague, this temple full of rats was completely safe. Another temple dedicated to Karni Mata differs from others because it does not contain an image or idol of her, but rather contains a foot-print to symbolize her visit to that place.

Rats in Karni Mata Temple Deshnok

Rats in the Temple

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