Chakla Dham is a Hindu temple dedicated to Hindu Yogi Baba Lokenath. It is one of the most popular temples in West Bengal after Dakshineswar and Kalighat. Every day a lot of devotees from different parts of the world come here to pay a visit to this temple and seek blessings. It is believed by many that their wishes can be fulfilled by praying to Baba Lokenath. They also tie a thread or Dhaga here to fulfill their deepest desires. In this article I will mention everything that you need to know before visiting Chakla Dham Mandir. So keep on reading.
History of Chakla Dham:
Baba Lokenath was born in 1730 in a Hindu family on the day of Janmashtami. His father Sri Ramnarayan Ghoshal and mother Kamala Devi were spiritual people and wanted one of their four sons to devote themselves in the path of spirituality. They sent Baba Lokenath on a spiritual journey at a very early age and he became a Sanyasi. He reached Bardi later in his life and a wealthy family built an ashram for him there. He finally left his mortal body in 1890 at the age of 160 years. Today Baba Lokenath is a popular household deity who is worshipped in almost every household in Bengal.
Previously Chakla was considered the holy birthplace of Baba Lokenath but later there was a controversy regarding this. During the early 20th century Nityagopal Saha filed a case regarding this and wanted to establish Kachua Dham as the birthplace of Baba Lokenath. A lot of people still believe Chakla is the original birthplace and some believe it to be Kachua Dham. But Nityagopal Saha won the case and from then Kachua is considered the original birthplace of Baba Lokenath.
Location of Chakla Dham:
Chakla Village, Deganga Tehsil, North 24 Parganas, West Bengal
Chakla Dham Lokenath Mandir Timings:
The temple is open from 8am in the morning to 10 pm at night on all days. The timings for offering puja at the temple are 8 am to 12 pm and 3pm to 8pm. The Sandhya Arati timing is 6pm.
How to reach Chakla Dham:
The best possible way to reach Chakla Dham is by road. You can take a cab or your personal vehicle and drive through Jessore Road. From the Guma crossing on Jessore Road take a turn and you will reach Bada Bazaar. From there you can reach Chakla village. The time duration to reach here is approximately 2 hours. From Chakla Village the Dham is 20 minutes away. The distance of Chakla Dham from Kolkata is 54km.
If you want to travel by train you can take the Sealdah- Bongaon local to reach Guma Railway Station. Chakla Dham is about 30 minutes away from there.
Best time to visit Chakla Dham:
You can visit the Chakla Dham Lokenath Mandir all year round but if you wish to attend the special festivals then you can visit during that time as well. The Chakla Sevashram organizes many events for the devotees and the followers of Baba Lokenath visit the temple during those times. The special occasion celebrated here is the Birth Anniversary of Baba Lokenath. Another special time is the Tirodhan Utsab of Baba Lokenath that is arranged by the temple authorities. It is a 3 day Utsav that a lot of devotees attend every year. It is believed that Baba Lokenath left his mortal body on this very day.
Another festival celebrated here is Janmashtami. The temple is decorated beautifully during this occasion. Kartik Brata or Mangaldip is another occasion celebrated here during the Kartik Month of the Bengali Calendar. Other special festivals are Makar Sankranti, Nandotsav, Poush Sankranti, Poila Boishakh, Saraswati Puja, Shivratri, Laxmi Puja, Kali Puja and Durga Ashtami Puja.
Significance of Chakla Dham:
The Chakla Dham Mandir holds a lot of spiritual importance. The temple was built by Raja Narasingha Deb Roy but he could not complete the construction. Later his wife Rani Shankari Devi completed the temple after his death. The temple is sprawled across a huge area and has small houses for religious practices. The temple is entirely built of marbles. The whole area is divided into different blocks and the premise is surely a site of major attraction for the tourists. The entrance has a bull structure because a bull signifies power, strength, courage, determination and fighting spirit.
There are small counters inside the temple that sell photographs, CDs and books related to Baba Lokenath. There is a huge office as well that is mainly used for charity purposes.
It is widely believed that the lives of the people staying in Chakla improved to a lot of extent because of this temple and Baba Lokenath’s blessings. The people there got the opportunity to earn their livelihood by selling flowers and fruits near the temple. The followers of Baba Lokenath believe in following the path shown by him. They believe in serving the needy. Chakla Dham is also involved in various charitable works and they help people of all castes and communities.
The temple opens twice for Puja. Puja is offered to Baba Lokenath thrice daily. There are small shops outside the temple that sell Thali with all necessary items required for Puja and costs Rs. 10. This is known as the Dala Market. At 8:30 am in the morning the Balyabhog is given to the deity and in the afternoon Bhog Aarti takes place at 12:30 pm followed by Raj Bhog distribution. Everyone can have the Bhog after showing a coupon at the counter.
Nearby places to visit from Chakla Dham
The Kachua Dham is the nearest place you can visit from Chakla Dham Mandir. You can also visit places like Mangal Pandey Uddhyan, Chakla Maha Shoshan, and Ruins of Chandraketugarh and Chakla Durga Mandir.
Chakla Dham Hotels
You can stay at the Sri Lokenath Sevashram Sangha. There are options for hotels in North 24 Parganas as well that you can book and stay in.
Chakla Dham Mandir is one of the popular tourist attractions in West Bengal and a site of spiritual importance. Every year devotees from all over the world come and visit this temple to seek blessings from Baba Lokenath. The ambience and environment here is extremely peaceful and you will feel energized from within. If you have never visited this temple, then this is your calling. Definitely do visit this temple with faith in your heart and may all your deepest desires come true after visiting the temple. Do let me know if this article was helpful for you before planning your visit to the Chakla Dham Lokenath Mandir.