Monday, September 10, 2012

Parasurama and Nalla Sopara of Mumbai

Nalla Sopara is a suburban coastal town of Mumbai. Most are familiar with the legend of Parasurama and creation of Kerala.

Brahmandapurana, Upodghata pada, ch.58 narrates the following episode. The holy coastal town of Gokarna was once engulfed by the ocean due to indiscriminate excavation by sons of King Sagara. The munis of Gokarna approached sage Parasurama and sought relief. He went there and requested lord Varuna the ruler of the ocean to recede.Varuna refused. Parasurama took out his bow and arrow , pointed at Varuna and threatened to evaporate the entire ocean. Varuna conceded. Parasurama stood facing north and threw his ladle ( in the case of Kerala it was axe ) to the north in the north west direction. The ladle came and fell at Shoopaaraka which is the present day Nalla Sopara reclaiming land 200 yojanas ( a measure of distance ) in length.

The purana also accords holy status to the sea at Nalla Sopara just like Gokarna. Bathing there is said to relieve one of sins.

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