Twenty Five kilometers from Hyderabad off the Vikarabad road and on the banks of Osmansagar is the picturesque village of Chikur with its hoary temple dedicated to Sri Balaji Venkateshwara. From the style, structure and appearance, it can be inferred that the temple was built half a millennium ago. Set in sylvan surroundings, the temple attracts thousands of pilgrims every year and is an ideal place for sequestered retreat and meditation. It enjoyed in the past, great days of pomp and glory.
It has been said that during 1980’s few of the students who faced rejection at the Chennai US visa consulate came here, prayed and then their wishes were fulfilled. Since then the temple has acquired the reputation of granting the American Visa. The “American Visa Temple” is a shining example of old-world religion coexisting with Hyderabadi’s 21st century globalisation
The temple is one of the oldest in Telangana, having been built during the time of Akkanna and Madanna, the uncles of Bhakta Ramdas. According to tradition, a devotee who used to visit Tirupati every year could not do so on one occasion owing to serious ill-health. Lord Venkateshwara appeared in his dream and said, “I am right here in the jungle nearby. You don’t have to worry.” The devotee at once moved to the place indicated by the Lord in the dream and saw a mole- hill there, which he dug up. Accidentally, the axe struck Lord Balaji’s idol covered by the mole-hill below the chin and on the chest, and surprisingly blood started flowing profusely from the “wounds”, flooding the ground and turning it scarlet. The devotee could not believe his eyes when he saw this. Suddenly he could not believe his ears also when he heard a voice from the air which said,”Flood the mole-hill with cow’s milk. “When the devotee did so, a Swayambhu idol of Lord Balaji accompanied by Sridevi and Bhoodevi(a rare combination) was found, and this idol was installed with the due rites and a temple built for it.
Sri Balaji venkateshwara, the Pratyaksha Daiva in kaliyuga, is thus available at Chilkur to shower blessings on His devotees who for any reason are unable to go to Tirupati. Many devout worshippers flock to the temple, to receive the blessings of the Lord and his consorts throughout the year particularly during the Poolangi, Annakota and Brahmothsavams
With the earnest desire to revive the former glory and importance of the temple, the idol of Ammavaru was installed in 1963 the year following the Chinese aggression, and when the aggression was unilaterally vacated, Ammavaru was given the name of Rajya Lakshmi, signifying this welcome event. The unique feature of this idol is that lotus flowers are held in three hands and the fourth hand is in such a position towards the lotus feet which signifies the doctrine of Saranagathi.
The temple has been visited by great Acharyas from time to time. A visit to the temple is a must for the Jeer of Sri Ahobila Mutt every time he visits the twin cities, and in the temple is installed the idol of the first Jeer. The Tilakayaths of Sri Vallabhacharya Sampradaya have been regularly visiting the shrine. Jagadguru Sri Sankaracharya of Sringeri Mutt and his disciple graced the efforts of the trustees in improving the temple.
During a visit the devotee goes through the usual rituals of prayer, including 11 circumambulations of the inner shrine, and makes a vow. Once the wish is fulfilled devotees then walk 108 times around the sanctum sanctorum. The majority of wishes by devotees are visa related, thus Chilkur Balaji is also referred to as ‘Visa’ Balaji. The 11 circumambulations represent the secret of creation — 11 means “1 soul and 1 body” — uniting both with devotion and full determination to fulfill wish, dedicate on the lord; there is no second, everything is god.
In the 108 circumambulations,
1 represents the Existence, Almighty, God (Paramathma, Balaji in the minds of the devotee),
0 represents Creation (Illusionary World, Jagath) and
8 represents the time Human Body takes to come to this universe-8 months (Jivatma).
The Chanting of following names of Lord Vishnu, immensely helps us in overcoming the obstacles in our daily life.
“Om Vashatkaaraaya Namaha” : For Success in Business.
“Om Aksharaaya Namaha” : For Success in Studies.
“Om Bhuthabhavanaya Namaha” : For Good Health.
“Om Paramaathmane Namaha” : For Self Confidence.
Every devotee has to keep eyes open while doing darshan of God idol in the temple.
God is everything; God does not want anything from devotees; God expects Devotion, Determination and Dedication from devotees. This temple has chance to surrender the above aspects with God
You won’t see any Hundi boxes, in the temple, or there are no paid or VIP lines where you can quick access for your visit to the God, everyone is considered equal and has to be in the same queue. The Temple however accepts voluntary donations