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Not far from Puri in Orissa stands the temple of Sakshi Gopal. Centuries have gone by but the legend that gave the deity this name is still popular, not only in the states of Orissa and the adjoining Andhra Pradesh, but in other parts of our country as well.
Sakshi Gopal was worshipped in a temple in Andhra Pradesh for a long time. Then a king of Orissa brought him to the present site.
The hero of our story loved a girl of his own village. But he was poor and the girl?s father avaricious. Fate placed the father in a situation from which our hero rescued him. The father was pleased and promised the young man the hand of his daughter. The only witness to this offer was the deity, the promise having been made in front of his temple.
Once he was back safe in his village, the father did not take into account this ?witness?, and denied the promise to our hero.
Alone and forlorn, our hero implored the deity to testify to his claim that the man?s daughter had indeed been promised to him.
How the deity came to his rescue and helped him win his bride is the legend colorfully retold in our Amar Chitra Katha.
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