Birla Mandir, Hyderabad
Birla Mandir is a Hindu temple, built on a 280 feet (85 m) high hillock called Naubath Pahad on a 13 acres (53,000 m2) plot. The construction took 10 years and was constructed in 1976 by Swami Ranganathananda of Ramakrishna Mission. The temple was constructed by Birla Foundation, which has also constructed several similar temples across India, all of which are known as Birla Mandir.
The temple manifests a blend of Dravidian, Rajasthani and Utkala architectures. It is constructed of 2000 tons of pure white marble. The granite idol of presiding deity Lord Venkateswara is about 11 ft (3.4 m) tall and a carved lotus forms an umbrella on the top. There is a brass flagstaff in the temple premises which rises to a height of 42 ft (13 m). The temple does not have traditional bells, as Swami Ranganathananda wished that the temple atmosphere should be conducive for meditation.
About the temple
Apart from the main shrine, the consorts of Lord Venkateswara, Padmavati and Andal are housed in separate shrines. The temple also has separate shrines for various Hindu gods and goddess including Shiva, Shakti, Ganesh, Hanuman, Brahma, Saraswati, Lakshmi and Saibaba. Selected teachings of holy men and Gurbani are engraved on temple walls. Birla temples are open to all, as identified by Mahatma Gandhi and other Hindu leaders.
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