Angala Parameswari Temple, Putlur – Legends
Lord Shiva and Parvathi were walking from Melmalayanur towards Ramapuram (the place where this temple is located, which subsequently came to be known as Putlur because of the Goddess manifesting herself in the form of a Putru – an anthill). This place was a forest those days full of neem trees. Parvathi tired after the long walk, sat down and asked Lord Shiva to fetch her some water. Lord Shiva went searching for water but could not find any nearby. He had to go to the river Coovum to bring the water. It started raining heavily and the river was getting flooded.
So, he had to wait a while for the rain to subside. Tired of waiting for the Lord, and exhausted with hunger and thirst, the Goddess lay down on the floor and an anthill grew over her. She became one and the same with the anthill. Lord Shiva returned shortly after and found that Parvathi had permanently stayed there. So, he too stood beside her and is called Thandavarayan. Probably this is the only Amman temple where you can find a Nandi before the sanctum sanctorum and this is because of the presence of Shiva behind the goddess.
One Ponmeni pledged his land to a money lender named Makisuran. He worked in the same land to maintain his family. Unscrupulous Makisuran tortured all the people this way by lending them money and swelled their liabilities with abnormal compound interest rates. He thus swallowed the lands of all. He severely beat Ponmeni due to default in payments and demanded Ponmeni in the presence of villagers to plough the Poongavanam outside the place in a single night on Shivarathri day before sunrise and threatened to do with his life if he failed to do so.
Poongavanam is the place of evil spirits. Ponmeni thought it better to fail and die in a day than dying each day. He began tilling the land praying to Mother Karumayee. He saw an old man and an aged woman under a tree. The woman was very thirsty. Ponmeni helped the old man to fetch water. When they returned, they found the woman disappearing. When Ponmeni turned to the old man, he also was not there. When Ponmeni resumed his tilling, he found the plough stuck and the spot began to bleed.
A voice assured him of safety and said “I am Angala Parameswari who came in the guise of the aged woman. Now, I am an ant-hill here. Responding to your prayer, I came with Lord Shiva. As my presence had been made known to the world by you, you will be relieved of poverty, continue worshipping me and the Lord.” Within a few minutes the anthill became visible. As the Goddess appeared from Poongavanam, she came to be worshipped as Poongavanathu Amman.