The fourth paṛāva (halt) of the sacrosanct Kashi Panchkroshi Yatra is the Pancho Pandava Mandir (Pancha Pandeshwar Mandir) located in the bustling Shivpur village. After having darshan at Kardameshwar Mahadev Mandir, Bhimchandi Mandir and Rameshwar Mandir, pilgrims head to Draupadi Kund that is located near a huge tank known as Manasarovar tirth.
According to the Hindu scriptures, this ancient kund was created by an arrow of Arjuna. Pilgrims generally stay overnight in this sacred kshetra to spend their time in meditation, prayer and bhajans. It is mentioned in Kashi Khanda of the Skanda Purana that one should take a dip in this kund and then offer prayers in the various shrines in this temple complex.
Draupadeshwar is a temple dedicated to Draupadi which also has the Yudhishteshwar Shiva Linga consecrated by Dharmaraja Yudhishtira. It is said one overcomes mental anguish and vices and attains peace by having darshan of these two Shiva Lingas. To the north of this temple, is Bhimeshwar Mandir. Pilgrims believe that one will gain physical strength by offering prayers here. The Arjuneshwar Mandir is adjacent to this.
Nakuleshwar and Sahadeveshwar temples are next to these temples. To the east of these temples is the Krishneshwar Temple with the Kunteshwar Temple next to it. Parikshiteshwar Temple is also revered by pilgrims.
Locals believe that by having darshan of Pancha Pandeshwar, one overcomes obstacles, physical ailments and grief. All the five Shiva Lingas in this temple complex have been consecrated by the Pancha Pandavas and are named after them. There are smaller shrines dedicated to Lord Ganesha, Lord Vishnu, Narada Devarshi, Kala Bhairava and Maa Annapurna Devi.
Written by Lakshmi Subramanian
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