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What is the story behind Karaikkal Ammaiyar and Mangoes?

The story behind the iconic Karaikal Mango Festival


Karaikkal Ammaiyar’s birth name was known as Punitavati and she was married to a wealthy merchant. One day, her husband had brought two mangoes for his afternoon meal.

Before that, a Siva devotee had come asking for alms, and she had given him one mango. After lunch, her husband had eaten one mango and wanted the other one. She prayed to Lord Siva for another mango, and was blessed with one.

When she gave this mango to her husband, he found it to be much sweeter than the previous one, and was suspicious of her. So, he asked where she got this mango, and she told him the truth.

He couldn’t believe it and asked her to give him another mango, but when the mango appeared again, he was petrified and ran away from her. Even today, in Karaikkal, they celebrate her marriage and devotion to Siva by hosting a mango festival annually.



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