CHENNAI: Natham Parameshwaramangalam, a village near the Palar Bridge on East Coast Road, is home to two ancient temples, one for Vishnu dedicated to Sowmya Damodara Perumal and another for Siva worshipped as Kailasanatha. Both these shrines were in a dilapidated condition and have been rebuilt.
Interestingly, the east-fa cing Kailasanatha temple is located on a small island on the River Palar, close to the river bank. The Lingam in the central sanctum was found nearby and enshrined here.
The temple entrance is on the south and can be entered via a small bridge which has been built in recent times for devotees to walk from the river bank to the island. The temple and the bridge can be clearly seen from a long distance while crossing River Palar, and presents a picturesque sight.
A granite mandapam is in front of the main sanctum, to the right of which is enshrined Goddess Parvati known as Kanakambika. In this pillared hall is an ancient image of Ganesha. Nandi and bali-pitam (pedestal for offering worship), which are also from times bygone can be seen in the open courtyard where the Navagraha are also worshipped.
To the right of the steps leading from the bridge to the island is a new sanctum for Dakshinamurti, facing south. A Pallava epigraph found here provides insightful details of donations to the deity who may have originally been called Saileshwara. It is heartening to see an ancient temple, resurrected from near oblivion, now brought to life.