Shree Siddhivinayaka Ganapati Mandir, popularly known as Siddhivinayak Temple is a Hindu temple located in the Prabhadevi locality of Mumbai in the state of Maharashtra.This Mandir developed from a small place of worship to a grand temple that stands today.
History and Architecture
It is a major place of worship as it fulfils the desires of the peoples who seek divine blessings from the Lord. The temple was constructed on 19th November 1801. Its build-up area was 3.6m x 3.6m square. It was ground floor structure and had 450mm thick brick walls and old type dome, having a brick with a Kalash above. Around the dome, the wall was protected with grills. The floor level of the temple and road level were also similar.
The temple was built by Late Mr. Laxman Vithu Patil, a professional contractor with the instructions of Late Mrs. Deubai Patil, who was a rich lady from Matunga. Although she was a wealthy lady, she had no child. One day, she humbly prayed to Lord Ganesha and said, “Although I cannot have a child, let other ladies get the pleasure of child on visiting the temple and praying you”. It is said that Lord Ganesha seeing her devotion towards him accepted her request and therefore, this temple came to be known as “Navasacha Ganapati” or “Navasala Pavanara Ganapati” in Marathi among the local pilgrims.
Around 125 years ago, Late Ramakrishna Jambhekar Maharaj, the great disciple of Shri Akkalkot Swami Samarth, who was also an ardent devotee of Lord Ganesh was blessed with Assyssinian ( Siddhi ). One day Swami Samarth asked Shri Jambhekar to bring some holy idols. Out of the numerous idols, Swami Samarth told him to bury 2 idols in the front courtyard of the house of Swami Samarth’s another disciple Shri Cholappa. During his attendance with Swami Samarth, Shri Jambhekar foretold that a Mandaar tree would grow on the very place after 21 years and Swayambhu Ganesha would appear on the sacred place. This miracle happened and from that day onwards, people’s devotion towards this sacred place started to grow day by day.
The idol of Shree Siddhivinayak is carved out of a single black stone and is 750mm high and 600mm wide with the trunk on the right. The upper right hand holds a lotus and the upper left hand holds an axe while the lower right hand bears a rosary (japmala) and lower left hand holds a bowl full of “Modak”. There is also a snake which appears on the left shoulder to right side belly of the deity. On the forehead of Lord, there is an eye which almost looks like the third eye of Lord Shiva. On adjacent sides of the Lord Ganesha idol, the idols of Riddhi and Siddhi Goddesses are installed. These goddesses signify success, wealth and comfort. Because of these two deities residing along with Lord Ganesha, this temple is known as the Siddhivinayak Ganapati Temple. The temple has a small mandap with the shrine of Lord Siddhi Vinayaka. The wooden doors to the sanctum are engraved with the images of the Ashtavinayaka. The inner roof of the sanctum is furnished with gold.
The 2550 square metre temple complex had two 3.6 metres Deepamalas, a rest house and also living quarters for the caretaker. It had an adjoining lake which was 30 x 40 square metres in size towards the eastern and southern side of the temple. The lake was built in the early 19th century by Nardulla to counter the shortage of water. It was filled up in the later years and the land is now not a part of the temple complex. In 1952, a small Hanuman shrine was also constructed in the temple complex for the Hanuman icon that was found during the road extension project of Sayani Road near Elphinstone Road. During the 1950s and 60s, the fame of the temple grow much larger and a significant number of devotees started visiting the shrine. However, during the same period, the owner of the plot sold a part of the temple land which reduced the complex area. After 1975, the number of pilgrims increased dramatically.