Dedicated To: Lord Shiva
Highlights: Houses one of the biggest Shiva lingams in the entire world
Ketakeshwar Dewal is one of the holiest Hindu shrines in the northeast zone of India. The entire temple is dedicated to the worship of Lord Shiva and enshrines one of the biggest Shiva lingams in the entire world. Over the years, the temple has emerged as the most important pilgrimage centre in the state of Assam. A local committee of Tezpur looks after the development and maintenance of the temple as well the area that forms a part of its surroundings.
The temple has two parts - the first part comprises of the area where the original Shiva lingam was supposed to have been enshrined, before it was shifted. The second part is the area where the lingam is currently located. The latter part is located a few kilometers away from the original base of the lingam. According to legends, the Shivalingam got uprooted during a severe earthquake that shook Tezpur and was deposited at its present place, on its own.
The temple is open for visitors and devotees all round the year and is usually crowded by pilgrims from all parts of Assam and also from outside the state. The original Dewal was in the middle of bamboo groves with a narrow lane for devotees to approach on foot. But recently, a complete shelter has been constructed around the site, in a bid to protect the holy area from the natural elements and also to enable the devotees to offer their prayers properly and in a more convenient manner.