The 800 year-old Gauri Shankar Temple is located close to the Digambar Jain Lal Temple at Chandni Chowk in Delhi. The temple is one of the most important temples of Shaivism in India.
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The lingam of the temple is surrounded by snakes made of silver. This is considered to be the 'cosmic pillar' or the centre of the universe. The temple was built by a Maratha soldier who was an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva, Apa Ganga Dhar. Tales say that he prayed to Lord Shiva when he was critically injured in a battle and promised to build a temple if he survives the severe injuries. Miraculously, he survived against all odds and the temple was constructed at Chandni Chowk. The temple was built in 1761.
The name of Apa Ganga Dhar is inscribed on the lower part of the pyramidal roof of the temple. However, the temple was renovated by Seth Jaipura in 1959, whose name is also inscribed over the windows of the temple. The interior of the temple has idols of Lord Shiva, his wife Goddess Parvati and of their sons Ganesh and Karthik. The bejewelled idols of Shiva and Parvati are situated behind the lingam. A silver pot is kept above the lingam from which water keeps pouring out continuously.
The nearby attractions of the Gauri Shankar Temple are the Red Fort and the Jama Masjid.