Location : Nichar, Himachal Pradesh
Worshipped Deities : Deity Usha
Usha Devi temple or Ukha Temple, as it is commonly called, is located at a distance of about 200 km from Shimla. Nichar, where the temple is actually situated is a place of bountiful beauty and abundant wild animals. Dedicated to Ukha or Usha Devi, the temple is quite significant for the local inhabitants. The temple is the pride of Kinnaur district.
The villagers residing in the nearby areas consider Usha Devi Temple to be the place of veneration. The worshippers flock to this place in order to give offerings to the goddess. The main Attraction of the temple are the plates made of bell metal that are sometimes used for eating purpose, especially when huge crowd gathers at the temple premises. The plates have been placed inside a room and no devotee is allowed to enter it. Only "Bhandari" has the limited access to the room. As he comes here to collect the plates, he is not expected to look around.
The entrance of the Usha Devi Temple is colossal one and has a wooden door. The door is embellished with the images of several deities.
Legends Related to the Temple :
The word "Usha" stands for dawn. According to the legend, Ahan, a yogi, worshipped Brahma for million of years in order to get his blessings and attain rare spiritualistic powers like creating objects out of sand. Jealous by increasing powers, Indra became apprehensive about the loss of his throne ad send Usha, a beautiful damsel to dissuade Ahan from his meditation. Ahan created the sun so that Usha disappeared every time he created sun. But Indra was determined in his purpose and kept sending her to the saint. Soon, rishi got disturbed and eventually married Usha.
Another story says that the demon inside Ahan came to prominence when he was subjected to continuous disturbance by the stunningly beautiful Usha. One day, he could no longer suppress his indignation and beheaded himself in a fit of rage. As he committed suicide, his "Tapasaya" or meditation came to an end. A temple called Usha Devi Temple was erected in praise of Usha.