Prime Minister Narendra Modi has inaugurated the Mahakaleshwar Corridor, constructed in Madhya Pradesh’s Ujjain. The Mahakaleshwar Temple is one of the 12 ‘jyotirlings’ in the country and gets devotees throughout the year.
About the ‘Mahakal Maharaj Mandir Parisar Vistar Yojana’ –
- It is a plan for the expansion, beautification, and decongestion of the Mahakaleshwar temple and its adjoining area in Ujjain district.
- Under the plan, the Mahakaleshwar temple premises of around 2.82 hectares is being increased to 47 hectares.
- This will be developed in two phases by the Ujjain district administration —
- The first phase of the project entails development of Mahakal Lok Corridor with a visitor plaza having two entrances — Nandi Dwaar and Pinaki Dwaar.
- A 900-metre pedestrian corridor has been constructed, connecting the plaza to the Mahakal temple, dotted with murals and statues depicting stories related to Lord Shiva.
- The corridor, known the Mahakal Lok, will skirt around the old Rudrasagar Lake and is touted as one of the longest of its kind in India.
- The second phase includes expansion of the eastern and northern fronts of the temple.
- It also includes development of various areas of Ujjain city, such as Maharajwada, Mahal Gate, Hari Phatak Bridge, Ramghat façade, and Begam Bagh Road.
About the ‘Mahakaleshwar Temple’ –
- Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga in Ujjain is one of the 12 jyotirlingas considered the most sacred abodes of Shiva.
- As per records, the temple’s Mahakal Lingam is believed to be Swayambhu (self-manifested) and unlike any other jyotirlingas in the country, the idol of Mahakaleshwar faces south.
- The bhasma-aarti is the first ritual conducted at the temple in the morning to wake the god, anoint (apply oil) and make the first offering of fire for him.
- The shrine is revered as one the 18 Maha Shaktia Peeth in India.
- Governing of the temple —
- The temple in its present form was built by the Maratha General Ranoji Shinde in 1734 CE.
- Before Independence, the Devasthan Trust used to look after the temple.
- This was replaced by the municipal corporation of Ujjain post-Independence.
- The collectorate office of Ujjain district now manages the administration of the temple.