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Temple of Rats

India is full of wonders and unbelievable things. Karni Mata(Mata means mother) Temple is one of them; where near about 20,000 rats are worshipped, fed and protected as they scurry between the feet of tourists.

Karni Mata Temple is a famous Hindu temple dedicated to Karni Mata at Deshnoke, 30km from Bikaner in Rajasthan, India. It is also known as the Temple of Rats. The holy rats living in temple are called kabbas and thousands of visitors come here to pay their respects and get blessings.

History of Temple


Karni Mata’s stepson Laxman drowned in a Kapil Sarovar pond in Kolayat Tehsil. Karni Mata implored Yama (the god of death) to revive him. After first resisting, Yoma gave in, promising that the boy and all of Karni Mata’s male descendants would be reincarnated as rats.

Some local folklore believes the story behind rats at the temple is different. They say that 20,000 strong army men deserted a nearby battle and came running to deshnoke. Upon learning the sin of desertion, punishable by death, Karni Mata spared the lives but made them rats and offered the temple as the future place of stay. The army of soldiers expressed their gratitude and promised to serve Karni Mata lifelong.

Local Belief


There is a popular belief that all rats are holiest rats and when they die, they are born as humans. Although, there are around 20000 rats here and they all are of same size, shape, weight and height. If one of the rats is killed, it must be replaced with one made of solid gold. Eating food that has been nibbled on by the rats is considered to be a “high honor” and it does not spread any disease.

Temple Architecture

The temple was completed in the early 20th century by Maharaja Ganga Singh of Bikaner in the late Mughal style. In front of the temple is a beautiful marble facade, which has solid silver doors. Across the doorway there are more silver doors with panels depicting the various legends of the Goddess. The image of the Goddess is enshrined in the inner sanctum.

If you are planning to visit India, then come and see this place. You will be surprised to see this in real.

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