The Kalighat Kali temple, also known as Dakhina Kalika is located in the city of Kolkata, West Bengal. It is believed that the name Calcutta has been derived from the word Kalighat. Kalighat Kali is said to be the most popular deity of West Bengal, worshipped on a dark night. Kalighat Kali temple is one of the four major Adi Shakti Peethas. The Shakti Peetha is a place of worship to Goddess Shakti also called Goddess Sati, the main deity.
Goddess Sati is the embodiment of Goddess Shakti (goddess of harmony) and also called such as Goddess Durga (goddess of strength) and Goddess Kali (goddess of destruction of evil). It is said that the four major Shakti Peethas are created from the limbs of Goddess Sati‘s corpse. The body part or ornament that fell to the earth, is the place where the Adi Shakti temples are built.
Apart from the following four Shakti Peethas, there are 51 other famous Peethas found from the religious books. The four major Adi Shakti Peethas are:
- Bimala Temple
- Tara Tarini Temple
- Kamakhya Temple
- Kalighat Kali Temple
The idols in this Kalighat Kali temple are Goddess Sati as Goddess Kali, the presiding deity and Lord Shiva as Lord Nakuleswar. Goddess Kali is known for blood and death. Close to the main shrine of Goddess Kali, twelve identical Shiva temples were found facing the east direction. The mythology says that Lord Shiva had a dance of destruction (Rudra Tandava) carrying half burnt body of goddess Sati after goddess Sati’s self-immolation.
To stop the dance of destruction performed by Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu threw His Chakra (Sudharshan Chakra) on Goddess Sati’s body which dismembered Her body into 52 parts. Each body part or ornament of Goddess Sati that fell on different places of the earth, and is the places where the Adi Shakti temples are built. It is believed that the toe of the right foot of Goddess Sati fell here.
- The temple remains open from morning 6:30 AM – 11:00 AM
- Evening 5:30 PM – 9:00 PM
- Durgapuja – September or October
- Dipavali – October or November
- Kumara Purnima – September or October
- Chaitra Mangalabara – April or May
Kolkata is connected with most of the Indian cities by road. Kolkata has a broad network of government and private buses.
Kolkata has three long-distance railway stations, located at Howrah (the largest railway complex in India), Sealdah, and Chitpur, which connect Kolkata by rail to most cities in West Bengal and to other major cities in India.
The airport in Kolkata was originally known as Dum Dum Airport before being renamed as Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport. It is located around 17 km from the city Center. Most of the domestic airlines have direct services to and from Kolkata to other important cities of India such as Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Patna, Varanasi, Luck now, etc.
- Dakshineswar Temple
- Pareshnath Jain Temple
- Birla Temple