Mukti Vanam-combining spirituality with nature
The district’s eco-tourism wing is developing a ‘Mukti Vanam’, close to the historic Kaleshwara Mukteswara Swamy Temple, offering a green way to immortalise departed souls. The park is being developed on around 50 acres land at Kaleshwaram in Mahadevpur mandal in the district. The temple located on the banks of river Godavari is frequented by thousands of pilgrims every year.
Kaleshwaram (Jayashanker Bhupalpally): The district’s eco-tourism wing is developing a ‘Mukti Vanam’, close to the historic Kaleshwara Mukteswara Swamy Temple, offering a green way to immortalise departed souls. The park is being developed on around 50 acres land at Kaleshwaram in Mahadevpur mandal in the district. The temple located on the banks of river Godavari is frequented by thousands of pilgrims every year.
Kaleshwaram is called ‘Dakshina Triveni Sangamam’ and has great significance among Hindus at it is located at the point of confluence of three rivers, river Godavari, its largest tributary Pranahita and third illusionary Antharvahini (Subterranean river) Saraswathi.
Because of such importance of the temple, huge numbers of devotees visit the place to immerse the ashes of their departed ones. In view of such practice among the devotees, the forest department is developing Mukti Vanam with a five acre ‘Smruti Vanam’, informed Mahadevpur Forest Range Officer B Ramesh.
‘Smruti Vanam’ offers an opportunity to the individuals to plant sapling of their choice in memory of their deceased family members and the forest department takes care of the sapling. Initially it is planned to allot five-acre land to Smruti Vanam with a scope for future expansion, he told The Hans India.
‘Planting a sapling and see it growing will be the best homage one can offer to the departed souls,’ he felt. Further, Mukti Vanam will have an Astro-Garden with ‘Raasi Vanam’, ‘Navagraha Vanam’, ‘Shiva Panchayat Vanam’ and ‘Nakshatra Vanam’, each vanam having a dedicated space.
The plants required for the purpose are being grown in the nursery within the premises of the MukthiVanam, Ramesh said. As per Hindu belief, each Janma Nakshatra (Birth Star) is associated with a tree. A person caring and worshipping his/her Nakshatra tree will be blessed with progress and prosperity in his/her life. At Nakshatra Vanam (Star forest), individuals can plant a corresponding sapling of 27 trees related to 27 birth stars.
Similarly, Varaha Mihira's Jyotisha Sashtra prescribes 12 types of trees representing each of 12 Zodiac signs. Individuals can plant sapling of their Janma Raasi and along with any one of nine types of Navagraha plants which believed to bring good luck into their lives. Those planting the saplings at Mukti Vanam and others have to pay a nominal fee annually towards their maintenance and they will be offered free entry into the park, explained Bhupalpally eco-tourism coordinator Suman Kalyanapu.
In addition to the above vanams, it is proposed to set up a Deer Park on five acre area, a cycling track, a water pond, children’s play area, walking track, tree huts with a provision for night camping and a restaurant. It is also proposed to equip the park with solar lighting with an estimated Rs 1.05 crore.
The State government has allocated Rs 1 crore towards the development of the park from Rs 25 crore allotted to Kaleshwaram Temple. The park will be open for the devotees within the next two months and will be a great value addition to Kaleshwaram Temple, informed the forest range officer Ramesh.