Monday, February 20, 2012



In the Rupal village of the Vadgam taluka, a large fair is organized on the auspicious occasion of Sitada Satam. This fair is attended by about 25,000 devotees. The main attraction for most devotees is a visit to the 800-year old temple of Shitalamata. People have immense faith in this temple and it's devi.

Shitalamata is the 'Lokmata' of the Hindus, yet people of other Religions also believe in her. They take vows in her name and do not fail to pay homage to her when their problems are solved. (Besides Gujarat, West Bengal is another place where Shitalamata is worshipped by people on a large scale.)

Shitalamata is also largely worshipped by women because it is believed that she blesses them to remain Akhand Saubhagyawati (i.e. she protects her husband's life). The meaning of Shitala is 'the devi who gives coolness'. That is why Neem leaves are used in various forms for people who are suffering from Shitala (a type of boils). This is because it is believed that when one suffers from these boils, the devi has come out in the open. Neem leaves are spread on the bed of the patient to provide a cooling effect.

Besides the temple of Shitalamata there are two smaller temples of Hanumanji.

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