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Mahalaxmi Temple

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The village of Bandode or Bandivade is the location of a number of temples among which is the large and beautiful temple of Goddess Mahalaxmi.The temple of Goddess Mahalaxmi has been in existence since at least the year 1413, when information about the rituals of the temple is found on stone plaques carved during the reign of Nanjan Gosavi Pratihast over Goa.However, there was another temple of Mahalaxmi in the fifteenth century in the town of Colva in Salcette. As is the case with most Hindu deities in Goa, the idol of Mahalaxmi from this temple was also smuggled away in the middle of the night to avoid persecution by the Portuguese in the sixteenth century.
Two devotees Safto and Fato, took the idol away in a trunk and first took her to the town of Talauli near Ponda. Till today, the people of this village worship the sign of the feet of the goddess. The idol brought from Colva was then taken to Bandode and installed along with the existing idol.So today there are two idols of Mahalaxmi in the temple premises, along with other deities such as Shri Ravalnath, Shri Baleshwar, Shri Narayan Purush and interestingly also idols of the two devotees i.e. Safto and Fato who managed to save the Goddess from Colva.The second Goddess Mahalaxmi from Colva is taken out in a procession only once a year on the auspicious day of Ramnavmi when she is taken around in a palakhi (palanquin) and a chariot.On the second day of this festival, both the idols are taken out in one chariot to be paraded in a huge procession. The main idol of the Goddess Mahalaxmi is also taken out during the festival of Mahashivratri, on a chariot carried on the shoulders of devotees.

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