Navagraha Temples at Kumbakonam, Tamil Nadu



9. Naganatha Swamy Temple or Kethu Sthalam


It is a Hindu temple in the village of Keezhaperumpallam, 2 kilometres from Poompuhar. The presiding deity is Ketu, a shadow planet. However, the main idol in the temple is that of “Naganatha Swamy” or Shiva.

According to history, Keezhperumpallam was famous as Vanagiri. Kethu and Rahu, popular as ‘ChaayaGrahangal’, associate with the legend of the churning of the milky ocean. When Devas and Asuras churned the ocean of milk with Manthira Mountain as churning stick and snake Vasuki as the rope, the amirtham emerged.

An asura who disguised himself as a Deva consumed it. Hence, Lord Narayana hit the asura on the head with the spoon in his hand. Then the cut off head fell on the ground. As the asura had consumed amirtham, his head and body continued to live.

Also, the head portion of the asura attached itself to a snake body and became Rahu Bhagavan. The body portion fell in Pothigai mountain region and a Brahmin preserved it. The asura body attacked the head of snake to become Kethu.


The center icon of the temple Kethu is a shadow planet. Also number 7 is the number denoting Ketu God. Further, Ketu God here has a divine posture with a five-head serpent as his head and folded hands worshiping Lord Shiva (Lord Naganathaswamy).

Devotees also believe that they will get rid of Naga dhosham, Kethudhosham, and form issues of marriage by worshiping in this temple. According to astrology, Ketu’s effects are that of similar to Mars but this is only one way of describing the malefic effect and power of Ketu.

Ketu can be more destructive if it is inauspiciously positioned in the horoscope. Ketu destroys the potency of the planet with which it is conjunct, making the planet behave in an uncontrollable manner. All days are special in the Ketu temple at Keezhaperumpallam.

Rahu and Ketu were the twins and universe planets than other planets. Lord Ketu is red in colour and has decorations of red lilly flower and red dresses. The effect of Ketu will create hindrance in one’s effort, poverty, enemy, ill health, devil spirits, loss of property, loss of face etc.


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