Kesava Deo Temple in MathuraKesava Deo Temple is located very close to main Krishna Janmabhoomi complex. Kesava Deo, which is one of the several names of Lord Krishna, is the deity of this age-old temple. It was constructed by Raja Veer Singh of orchha during the reign of Jahangir. Later, in1669, the temple was demolished by Aurangzeb and an Idgah was built there. Afterwards, Scindia rulers of Maratha regime found the temple near Potara Kund.
The new Kesava Deo Temple
During the times of British rule, this area was under direct control of Britishers who auctioned the area of Katra Kesava Deo and was purchased by King of Banaras, Raja Patnimal. He wanted to built temple over here but the ownership battle went under trial with muslim community after which the court finally assigned the land to heirs of king of Banaras. In 1944 Madan Mohan Malviya purchased this land but before he could start the construction, he passed away. Afterwards, Jaidayal Dalmiya of Dalmiya group and Jugal Kishore Birla of Birla group formed a trust in 1951 to construct this temple. The ownership of land was transferred to this trust and the construction of temple was completed in 1965 at the staggering cost of Rs 15 million.
Adjacent to the temple, within its main complex, is a small room that resembles a prison cell, where it is believed that Lord Krishna was born. The excavation of this particular place began in 1953, when the volunteers started cleaning the place and clearing debris and this work continued for several years, till the prison complex was completed in 1982.
This complex has many different temples such as Leela Mandir, Giriraj ji ka Mandir, Kesava Deo Mandir, Garbh Grih and Yogmaya Mandir. Garbh Grih is said to be the place where Lord Krishna was born. Here is a stone slab which is said to be the exact place of Krishna birth. The temple is adorned with beautiful paintings and carvings all over.
After the incidents of Ayodhya in 1992, the security was enhanced at this temple. Be ready to face checkings and meet military personnel everywhere. There is strict ban on cameras, mobiles, lighters, matchbox and eatables here. Digital accessories should be submitted outside. Smoking is strictly prohibited.
Kesava Deo Temple Timings: Morning - 5:30 am to 12:00 pm; Evening - 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm
The Temple has its own calendar of festivals which is not synchronized with other temples of the region. Special celebrations are done on the festival of Janmashtami when lakhs of devotees assemble here. These celebrations begin in the evening and continue till late midnight after the birth of the Lord.
The best time to visit is either in the months of February-March or from October to December, when the weather is not that humid. Although the temple is open whole year.
How to Reach Kesava Deo Temple in Mathura
Located at the heart of the city, the temple can be easily approached by taxi, auto or rickshaw. From Mathura Junction Railway Station, the distance of temple is around 1.5 km. To reach from Mathura Junction, turn westward for 200 m and then turn right towards SH-80 (Hathras-Mathura Road). After a distance of around 1.3 kms, turn left to reach Kesava Deo temple.