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Worshipped by Chinese and Indians, Kolkata’s Maa Kali is offered noodles by devotees!

Priest carrying out the religious rituals at the Chinese Kali Temple in Kolkata

Diversity is the essence of India’s rich heritage and culture, be it in the matter of tastes or clothing or even the way of worshipping! Proving this amply is the classic case of a Kali temple in Kolkata which is popularly known as “Chinese Kali Temple”.

At most religious places in India, the priests give out prasad which is either a sweet like laddoos or bundis or sometimes fruits like banana and apple to the devotees and visitors. However, in the Chinese Kali Temple they offer guess what as prasad, Chinese cuisine!

This place of worship is located in Kolkata’s Tangra area which is also known as China Town. What makes this place really a tourist attraction is the syncretic blend of Tibetan and East Asian culture with the Indian one.

One would not find anything special about the temple and the idol – they look the same like any other Kali temple. What is unique about the temple is that devotees here offer Chinese cuisine – like noodles, chop suey, sticky rice, and various other dishes to the Goddess. This unique offering is later given as prasad to the worshippers.

Going by the reports in the local Press, the temple is said to be 80 years old. Initially, it is said Hindus used to pray to two granite stones which were placed underneath a tree, by applying vermilion on them before the temple came up. It was 20 years ago that the Chinese community along with other Bengalis decided to construct the temple.

Popular legend states that a Chinese child, a boy who was 10 years old fell sick and despite all kinds and types of medication and care, was unable to recover. His parents in a state of despair and hopelessness, picked him up and placed him near the two granite stones revered by people. They prayed with devotion and behold, the child recovered. Since that miracle, the site became very important with people thronging there, with the temple coming up there later.

Also read: Now Mothers will lead rituals in Durga Puja celebrations!