is one of the five ancient shrines in the Chengannur area of Kerala, connected with
the Mahabharatam. (Chengannur - Yuddhishtra, Tiruppuliyur - Bheema, Aranmula
- Arjuna, Tiruvamundur - Nakula and Tirukkadittaanam - Sahadeva). It has been
glorified by the tamil hymns of Nammalwar of the 1st millennium CE. Another of the Alwars,
Tirumangaialwar has mentioned Tirupuliyur in one of his verses in his Siriya
Legend has it that Bhima the Pandava
prince built this temple and worshipped Vishnu here. A colorful legend regarding the
saptarishis and a great famine that occurred in this area is associated with this temple.
Other local legends associated with feudal warfare amongst the local rulers and the
priests are also associated with this temple. It is believed that this temple lay without
worship for a 200 year period after which it was consecrated and reopened.
At Malanad near Kollam there is a temple dedicated to Duryodhana of the Kauravas of
Mahabharata. A local community known as Kuravas offers worship at the Duryodhana temple.
It is widely believed by the Kuravas that harm would befall them if they spent a night at
Tiruppuliyur housing the temple established by Bheema.
The food offerings made at the Tiruppuliyur temple are vast in magnitude. At least 400
measures of rice are used in the preparation of special offerings, acknowledging the
hearty appetite associated with Bheema the builder of the temple.