Deshnok is a small village situated 32 km south from Bikaner city along the Jodhpur Road. It is connected by national highway and rail. It is a pilgrim centre of Karni Mata. Karni Mata, considered as an incarnation of Goddess Durga lived here in the fourteenth century and performed many miracles. Originally the village was called ‘dus- nok’ meaning ten corners as it was formed by taking ten corners of ten villages.
Deshnoke is famous for its 600 year old Karni Mata temple where rats are worshipped. Goddess Karni mata is worshiped by the royal family as well as general public of Bikaner and other parts of Rajasthan from old times.
Before the temple is a beautiful marble facade, which has solid silver doors built by Maharaja Ganga Singh. Across the doorway are more silver doors with panels depicting the various legends of the Goddess. The image of the Goddess is enshrined in the inner sanctum.
Devotees believe that when Karni Mata’s son drowned, she ordered Yama, the god of Death, to bring him back to life. When Yama refused to do so, she did it herself and decreed that members of her family would no longer die, but would be incarnated as kabas (rats), and these kabas would returns as members of her family.
This temple is quite famous for a large number of brown rats running around the temple complex fearlessly. It is believed that the souls of dead Charans (traditional bards, the devotees of Mata) reside in these rats.
In Deshnok there is also the great Shri Karni museum (Opposite to the temple). It is a big hall 52 X 36 feet. A beautiful marble floor to walk on, big and beautiful painting adorn the walls for the pleasure of the tourists. There are 22 antique paintings depicting mata and her life. It is open to visitors from early morning till the evening.
This miraculous temple is looked after by a special caste called “CHARAN”
The charans are the real heirs of Shri Karni-mata since last 500 years. Shri karni-mata was married to depaji in the year 1401(as per english (calendar). her mother’s name was dewal bai and father’s name was meha ji. she was born in a very ordinary family. since she was the reincarnation of durga, so shri karnima advised her husband to marry gulab bai her younger sister, to give him a heir. depa ji and gulab bai had four sons naming naga, puna, shitha and lakhan. they became the actual heir of karni mata.
How to reach Karni Mata Temple of Deshnok ,Bikaner
Rail service is also there, you can reach Bikaner by meter gauge or by broad gauge train. Bikaner is connected with Delhi, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Bhatinda, Kalka and Kolkata.
Bikaner By Air:
The nearest airport is Jodhpur, 253 Km and the other airports are Jaipur, Agra and Delhi.
Bikaner By Road:
Bikaner is about 450 Km by road from Delhi, 350 Km from Jaipur and 350 Km from Jodhpur. The condition of the roads is good.