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Deshnok Temple, Bikaner

Deshnok TempleDeshnok Temple—A Temple Where Rats Are Fed Like King And Worshiped Like God

Deshnok Temple or Karni Mata Temple is a famous temple of Rajasthan. It is located in a small village called Deshnok which is situated at a distance of 32 km from Bikaner city. The credit of its popularity goes to the thousands of rats who make their home in this temple. The temple was built in the 20th century by Maharaja Ganga Singh. He built it in honor of the goddess Karni Mata. The temple is made in marble and the interiors are decorated with silver and gold work. The main door of the temple is made of silver. The most interesting thing about the temple is that the temple is an abode of around 20,000 rats which are considered holy by the people. These little creatures are called kabbas by the locals who come from far off places to see them.

The curiosity of the tourists brings them here .Karni Mata is believed to be the incarnation of goddess Durga symbolizing power and victory. There is a story linked with the temple and its holy rats. The legend goes that Kani Mata lived here in the 14th century. Once a child of one of her clansmen died. She tried to revive the child but the God of Death said that the child had already been given a new form. Karni Mata made a deal with the God of Death that from now on all the members of her clan would be reborn as rats until they could be born back as the members of the clan.

No where in the world rats are treated as well as they are in Deshnok temple. They share Prasad (blessed food) with the devotees flocking here. They are fed like kings and worshiped like God. What luck! Out of the thousands rats, there are four or five white rats. The sight of a white rat is considered highly auspicious. So when you visit the temple keep a look out for the white one. It is believed that they are the manifestations of the Karni Mata herself.

Rats are dreaded by people because they spread diseases like plague but in Deshnok despite the presence of such a huge population of rats there has never been any incident of plague or any other rat borne disease. May be this is the magic of Karni Mata.

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