A deity, Aravan is worshiped in our country, Tamil Nadu state of India, to whom eunuchs are married. In many places he is also known as Irawan. Aravan is the god of Hijra, hence Hijra is called Aravani in South India. The most surprising thing about Hinjado and Aravan Devta is that the Hijra marry their adorable god Aravan once in a year. However, this marriage is only for one day. Their married life ends with the death of Aravan Devta the next day. Now the question arises that who is Aravan, why do eunuchs marry him and why this marriage is only for one day? To know the answer to all these questions, we have to go to the Mahabharata period.
According to the story of Mahabharata..
Once Arjuna, for violating a condition of marriage to Draupadi, is expelled from Indraprastha and sent on a one-year pilgrimage. After leaving there Arjun goes to North East India where he meets a widowed serpent princess Ulupi. Both fall in love with each other and get married. Shortly after the marriage, Ulupi gives birth to a son who is named Aravan. After the birth of a son, Arjuna leaves both of them there and goes on his further journey. Aravan lives with his mother in Naaglok. When he is young, he leaves Nagalok and comes to his father. Then the war of Mahabharata is going on in Kurukshetra, so Arjuna sends him to the battlefield to fight.
There comes a time in the Mahabharata war when..
The Pandavas need a prince to voluntarily sacrifice a male at the feet of Mother Kali for their victory. When none of the princes comes forward, Aravan offers himself for a voluntary male sacrifice but he makes a condition that he will not die unmarried. This condition creates great trouble because no king, knowing that his daughter will be widowed the next day, is not ready to marry his daughter to Aravan. When there is no way left, Lord Krishna transforms himself into Mohini and marries Aravan. Next day Aravan himself offers his head at the feet of Mother Kali with his own hands. After the death of Aravan, Shri Krishna also mourns his death for a long time in the same Mohini form. Now, being a man, Shri Krishna marries Aravan in the form of a woman, so the eunuchs, who are considered to be men in the female form,
Only the head of Aravan is worshipped.
Although temples of Lord Aravan have now been built in many parts of Tamil Nadu, their oldest and main temple is in the village of Koovagam in Villupuram district, which is known as Koothandavar Temple. In this temple only the head of Lord Aravan is worshipped, just like the head of Barbarik is worshiped in Khatushyamji of Rajasthan.