Enclosed by the snowy mountains, Kamrunag Shrine of Mandi is situated at an altitude of 3334 meters above sea level. It is believed that the Lord KamruNag wanted to participate in the great battle of Mahabharat. However, he was not allowed to take part in the battle. However, he witnessed the battle until its end.
Kamrunag’s original name was Ratan Yaksha and he was a self-learned warrior. He practice by keeping Lord Vishnu’s idol in front of him and considered him as his master Guru. He got to know about the story of Mahabharat being fought in some far corner of Bharat and decided to take part in it. Brave and courageous he was, he decided to fight with the weaker party, which meant he was going to join the army of Kauravas.
But his dream remains dream because Lord Krishan did not allow him to take part in battlefield.
Disguised as a yogi, Lord Krishna appeared before the Yaksha. He asked him about his journey and told him about the hardships being experienced by wounded soldiers. Ratan Yaksha listened to the story and it strengthened his determination. Lord Krishan gave him a tough test to find out the strength of his arrows and said, “I will be convinced if you can pierce every leaf of that enormous peepal tree with thy arrow.” When the Yaksha was preparing his arrow, the Lord plucked some leaves and hid them in his closed fists. To his surprise, the arrow pierced even the leaves in his fists. Then Lord Krishan asked him about his guru, upon which the Yaksha replied it to be no one but the almighty himself.
The yaksha could not resist and he had to offer what the Lord had asked for, his head. He gave away his head and asked the Lord to keep it alive until the Great War was over. The Lord immediately agreed and blessed him with the same, his head was brought to the Kamru Hill and today it is known as Kamrunag Temple.
To witness the special ritual of immersing currency notes, gold and silver jewelry worth lakhs in the lakh, thousands of devotees visited Kamrunag Shrine. In Kamrunag temple money and jewellery offered by devotees is not deposited in the banks rather immersed in the lake water. This trend is being followed by centuries.
The legends also say that villagers visit the lake and the temple to pray to the Rain God during summers and it is believed that only after prayers have been offered to the Lord, the rainy season marks its presence in the valley.
Kamru Nag Lak
Kamru Nag Lake has enormous religious significance in the region as the temple of one of most revered deities in Mandi, known as Kamrunag Dev is situated on the banks of lake. Pilgrims take holy bath during Kamrunag ‘jatar’ in the lake. A fair is held here on 14th of June every year. People make various offerings especially of gold ornaments, coins etc. People have been making offerings of gold and other precious metals and stones since centuries.
Thus gold and other ornaments much more than anyone’s imagination lies buried in the depths of the holy lake of Kamrunag. Thieves have attempted several times in the past but without any success. During winters the lake is completely frozen.