Sri Kanaka Maha Lakshmi Temple
Sri Kanaka Maha Lakshmi Ammavaru is the presiding deity of the Visakhapatnam locals. It is believed that Goddess Sri Kanaka maha lakshmi is considered the family deity of rulers of this area and the present location of the temple was in the rampars of their fort. People believe that the area gained the name of Burujupeta since it is in this area that the ramparts of the fort existed in the past.
The idol (bust of Goddess) was located in the middle of a narrow street in Burujupeta. Unlike in other temples in Andhra Pradesh, if not in South India, that the devotees can directly worship the deity. It is a practice completely different from any other temple where the devotees can only come up to the sanctum sanctorum but cannot enter it. A devotee can break a coconut and pour the water on the idol, apply kumkum and turmeric herself or himself. It is common that milk abishekam being performed by devotees. The temple priest do perform the daily puja and other rituals but the devotees worship the Goddess on their own. Thursday is the most auspicious day for the kanaka maha lakshmi Goddess and thousands throng the temple every Thursday.
According to story told by locals , in the year 1912, the Idol of Goddess Sri Kanaka Maha Lakshmi Ammavaru was taken out from the well and it was installed at the center of the road i.e., amidst the Municipal lane. In the Year 1917 The Municipal authorities have shifted the idol from center of the road to the corner of the road for the purpose of widening the road. During this period the dangerous contagious disease `Plauge’ spread over the town and so many deaths occurred in Visakhapatnam village. The people of Visakhapatnam were afraid of the incident and thought the devastation was due to shifting of idol of goddess `Sri Kanaka Maha Lakshmi’ and therefore, re-erected Ammavari Idol to its original place i.e., at the center of the road as it existed now.
Owing to re-erection, the `Plague’ disease was cured and normalcy was restored in Vishakhapatnam. With this, the villagers have a staunch belief that it is all due to miracle of Goddess, and thus from then onwards the Villagers used to worship the Goddess by performing sevas with much devotion.
The month of Margasira according to Hindu calendar (observed as Margasira Masam) that generally comes during November-December every year is considered the most auspicious one and perhaps this is why the annual celebrations of Goddess Sri Kanaka maha lakshmi said to be an incarnation of Goddess Lakshmi are organized at the temple. The festivities began with fervor on the morning with the traditional nadaswar followed by panchamrutabhishekam and sahasranama kumkum puja. Later, the abishekam to the Goddess was performed with milk, followed by pujas in the afternoon and evening. Recital of Lalitha Sahasranamam in the morning, rendering of Annamayya kritis,
In the evening hours Harikahtha and devotional music programme were organized. Thousands of devotees offered worship on the opening day and the devotional fervor continues for the rest of the month. Especially on Thursday nearly about 2 to 3 lakh devotees throng the temple to have darshan. Besides, panchamruth Abhishekam and ksheerabhisheka seva, special programmes like recital of the Bhagavad-Gita, Sapthasathi and Mahavidya, Lakshmi homam and Srichakrapuja are being conducted during the month.