Ranjangaon Ganesh Mandir (aka) Mahaganpati Mandir, a famous temple which is one of the Ashtavinayaka
Updated: Apr 3, 2020
The Ranjangaon Ganpati temple is located in Shirur taluka about 50kms from Pune and is the eighth temple visited by devotees who set out on the divine Ashtavinayak Yatra. Mahaganapati is the most powerful representation of Lord Ganesha. Mahaganapati is depicted as having eight, ten or twelve arms. It is after invoking this form of Ganpati that Shiva vanquished the demon Tripurasur and so he is also known as Tripurarivade Mahaganpati. Managanapati is potrayed, seated on a lotus, flanked by his consorts Siddhi and Ridhi. The idol of lord Ganesh is also named as ‘Mahotkat’, and it is said that the idol has 10 trunks and 20 hands.
As per a Hindu mythological legend, a sneeze by revered saint Grutsamad resulted in the creation of a lad named Tripurasura. He learned the Ganesh mantra from his father & invoked Lord Ganesha, who granted him a wish to be the most powerful being whom nobody but Lord Shiva alone would be able to destroy, after which Tripurasura would attain salvation. Tripurasura became very vain & arrogant on getting this wish & proceeded to wreak havoc wherever he went. He first took over the netherworld and then the heavens, including Lord Indra’s abode. Even the most powerful Gods & Goddesses could do nothing to defeat him. He even cunningly got a boon from Lord Shiva and took over Mount Kailash, the abode of Lord Shiva. Finally he started creating mayhem on the earth itself. With all the worlds conquered, the vain Tripurasura started worshipping his own idol as he considered himself to be the most powerful being.
Terrified of Tripurasura, the heavenly Gods approached Lord Narada for advice. Lord Narada told them that since it was Lord Gajanan who had made Tripurasura so powerful, they should pray to Lord Gajanan only. Following this advice, the Gods recited the 8 Ganesha stotras which Lord Narada had taught them. These stotras are known as Sankatnashan [read the words of Sankatnashan stotra here]. Lord Gajanana, on being invoked, then said that whosoever said the Sankatnashan prior to trying to conquer/overcome all obstacles would be successful.
Subsequently the Gods decided to request Lord Shiva to destroy Tripurasura since, as per the boon granted to him, he would die only at the hands of Lord Shiva. However, Lord Shiva was unsuccessful. He realized this was so because He had not had not recited the Sankatnashan stotra. Once He had recited it, He was immediately able to get a special bheejmantra from Lord Gajanana & with a single arrow killed Tripurasura.
It is believed that the place where Lord Shiva invoked Lord Ganesha & defeated Tripurasura is Ranjangaon (the word ranjan means the delighted one), prior to which it had the name of Manipur.
According to the history the temple was built in between 9th & 10th century. Temple is so constructed that sun rays fall directly on Shree Ganesha’s idol. Since, this temple was on his way to war, Shreemant Madhavrao Peshwa used to halt here have Mahaganapati’s darshan. Madhavrao Peshwa made a room in the basement of the temple to keep the idol of the lord Ganesh. He had constructed a stone sanctum around this swayambhu or self-emanated idol. In 1790 A.D he gave a hereditary right to perform pooja of Mahaganapati to shri Anyaba Dev. Temple hall was built by Sardar Kibe & Owaris (several small apartments erected along the course of enclosing wall of temple) were built by Sardar Pawar & Shinde. Famous hermit Morya Gosavi had presented an idol made of five metals to Shri Anyaba Dev. This idol is taken out in procession on festive days.
Nagarkhana is situated above the entrance gate. This Nagarkhana was inaugarated by Maharashtra’s honorable Chief Minister Shri Monohar Joshi on 3rd May, 1997. Main temple looks like temple from Peshwa’s period. Temple facing east has huge & beautiful entrance gate. Idols of two door keepers namely Jay &vijay are present near the gateway.
How to Reach -
Road - If you are traveling in sequence then route is Ozar - Narayangaon - Pargaon - Malthan - Ranjangaon (70km). If you are traveling from Pune then route is Pune - Shikrapur - Ranjangaon (55km). From Mumbai, Mumbai - Lonavala - Talegaon - Chakan - Shikrapur - Ranjangaon (190km).
Train - Nearest railway station is Pune. State Transport buses are available from Pune. The frequency of buses is very high.
Flight - Nearest domestic airport is Pune and international airport is Mumbai.