Location: The specimen of an ancient pilgrimage dedicated to lord ‘Shiva’ called ‘Babulnath’ is built on a small hillock near Girgaum Chowpatty in Mumbai, India. Here, the deity popular as ‘destroyer’ (Shiva) is worshipped in the form of the Babul tree.
Prime deity: Lord Shiva
Prime occasion to visit: Mahashivaratri, Shravan Month and Monday
Dynasty: Raja Bhimdev
Historical era: 12th century
Built in the year: 1780
History: The structure appeared now-a-days is revived from its relics in 1780. The sculpture of lord Shiva was erected in the temple during the reign of Raja Bhimdev. For many decades, it had been folded under manifolds of the earth. But in between 1700 and 1780, this pilgrimage was evolved again.
The revived structure of this temple had long height. For adding more dumbstruck features, it was installed with candid lightening equipments in 1960s. But spire was collapsed later and hence, it’s height cut down a bit.
It has been thronged with countless devotees every year including saints, seers and yogis across the country.
Legend: The mythology of Hindus narrates the tale of its rediscovery. It goes: When the soil was dug out from the region where it is now, 5 idols were spotted. These include a shivalinga, Ganesha, Hanuman and Parvati, which portrayed original. Four out of these five were housed in the temple while the fifth one had defect. It was broken and Hinduism does not allow keeping a torn or tattered idol to be erected inside the shrine for worshipping. Now, what more could be done with this broken image of deity but to immerse in the river, pond or sea.
Relics: Since this holy abode is evolved from its relics, thus it’s interesting to know that the land, where it is today, belonged to the Parsi community. The temple is established near 5 Dakhma’s existence. However, Parsi community was not in favour of establishing this structure. A long litigation in court continued till the late 1800 between Hindu and Parsi communities. But eventually, the matter of dispute settled down.
The temple’s patron was a Hindu merchant who hailed from Gujarati community.