Gnana Saraswati is a Hindu temple of Goddess Saraswati located on the banks of Godavari River at Basar, Telangana. Basar is a village with wonderful gardens surrounded by the temple premises of Telangana state, 30-km from Nizamabad. Basar is situated on the banks of River Godavari.
This temple is an abode of Goddess Saraswathi, Goddess Lakshmi and Kali considered as the Holy Trinity. Legends says that Veda Vyasa, his followers and sage Suka had desired to stay at in a serene environment after the Kurukshetra War. Searching for a peaceful abode, they then moved into the Dandakaranya forest and finally chose this place owing to peaceful climate. Maharishi Vyasa was known for performing his regular ablutions in the Godavari river. Each day after this process he used to get sand in fists and made them into images of Goddess Saraswathi, Lakshmi and Kali by means of his mystic power and offered prayers. The place derives its name from Vyasa and called Vasar or Basar (Basara in local dialect). It is also considered to be among the three temples created near the holy confluence of the Manjira and Godavari Rivers by the Ashtrakutas. A Karnataka king by the name Bijialudu reportedly constructed the current temple at Basar.
According to Mahabharatha, Maharishi Vyas and his disciples and sage Viswamitra decided to settle down in a cool and serene atmosphere after the Kurukshetra War. In the quest for a peaceful abode, he came to Dandaka forest and, pleased with serenity of the region, selected this place. Since Maharishi Vyasa spent considerable time in prayers, the place was then called “Vasara” and turned into Basara due to the influence of the Marathi language in this region.
It is also believed that this temple is one of the three temples constructed near the confluence of the Manjira and Godavari rivers.
Historically, ‘Bijialudu’ a Karnataka king, who ruled the province of Nandagiri with Nanded as his capital in the sixth century, constructed the temple at Basara. In the 17th century, the idols of the temple were reinstated by a chieftain of Nandagiri (Nanded) subsequent to destruction caused by Muslim invaders.
Saraswati is the Hindu Goddess of knowledge and learning. Children are brought to the temple for the learning ceremony called as “Akshara Abyasam”. The Temple authorities perform this function in a ceremonial way in the temple premises. Many pilgrims come to Basara to perform the “Akshara abhyasam” ceremony for the children before they start formal school education.
The Goddess here is known as “Gnana Saraswati” meaning Goddess of Knowledge. The shrine is very beautiful, attractive.and powerful.