Bangaru Bavi (Golden Well):

Once when the great Saint Yamuna (Alavandar) was in Tirumala to worship Sri Venkateswara, it so happened that due to rains, pure and sacred water from Papavinasam could not be brought in time for the holy bath of Bhoga Srinivasa. Water from other sources would not suit the purpose: There is a well near the temple kitchen dug by the devotee Rangadasa. It is celebrated in the Purana as Sridevi Tirta and the well bore the name Bangaru Bavi (Golden Well). Saint Yamuna sought the feet of Sridevi and appealed to her kindness thus: “0 Sridevi the abode of all auspicious qualities! You please grant it that the water from your Tirta be suitable for the holy bath and puja of the Lord in a way equal to the water from Papavinasam. By your grace it should suit His health”. Getting her sanction Saint Yamuna himself took out water from that well and had the morning Puja conducted with the holy bath of Bhoga Srinivasa. He ordained “Hereaf­ter this well shall be used solely for the use of our beau­tiful Lord Srinivasa and shall be called “Alaga Piranar Kinaru” (Tamil — the well of our beautiful Lord). All ser­vices to the Lord may be conducted using water from this well and such services shall not be delayed for the non-arrival in time of water from Papavinasam.

Coming to know .of this incident Sri Ramanuja commanded his followers that the command of Saint Yamuna – his Paramacharya Alavandar-should be fully re­spected. He ordered that water from Akasa Ganga or the water from Papavinasam agreed to be equal to it by the Lord before Srisaila Purana, ‘br the water from this Alagapiranar well (Golden w’ell) that is, one of these three, should be used for the puja and other services to Venkateswara.

The Sridevi Tirta, blessed by Sridevi as suitable for preparing the daily food (naivedya) of Srinivasa near the Lord’s kitchen, is an ancient well. It had disappeared in course of time being filled with earth. The devotee Rangadasa dug it up and built up the inside with stones. This well is called by the alternate names Bangaru Bhavi• (golden well) and Alagapiranar well. The other -well Bhudevi Tirta found in the second prakara near the supple­mentary kitchen where snacks (Laddu, vadai etc.) are prepared is similarly an ancient one. It was also lost and re-dug and built up by Rangadasa mainly for watering flower plants.

The outer prakara was a flower garden in those days. Chapter 9 of the second section of the Varaha Purana re­lates that Rangadasa who came to worship Srinivasa was very much impressed and wanted to establish a flower garden for the service of the Lord. He had two wells dug and used the water from them to grow a variety of flower plants jasmine, alari, mullai, mandara, lotus, lillies and champak. He used to make garlands using the flowers. So there is reference to the wells dug out by Rangadasa in ancient accounts of Tirumala..

Chapter 13 of `Bhavishyothara Purana’ refers to Govinda (the Lord) telling King Thondaman, “In an ear­lier birth you were Rarigadasa my devotee. You dug those two wells, called Sridevi Tirta and Bhudevi Tirta. Rein­force them with granite stones and cover the outer side with copper sheets covered with gold”. Accordingly the king covered the stone construction with copper plates covered with gold.

Chapter 7 of the ‘Brahma Purana’ says: “Under the tamarind tree yonder, there is an anthill in which a beautiful Vishnu idol is partly buried. Close to that is a well designed by Bhudevi whose holy water is used for cooking food for the Lord. In the region north-west of the tamarind tree is a much cow which regularly show­ers milk on the Vishnu idol in the ant-hill. In between Bhumi Tirta and Swami Pushkarini that great devotee (Rangadasa) established a flower garden for the sport of Hari.”