Jai MAA KALI
Make your visit to the temple a worthwhile and pleasant experience.
Please note the following carefully.
1. The temple is crowded on Tuesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. It is less crowded early in the morning before 8.A.M. If you can, plan your trip for a Wednesday early morning.
2. Avoid taking cell phones and digital cameras to the temple. If you do have to take them, keep them inside your handbag while entering the temple.
3. Do not carry a heavy wallet/purse openly. Take out a particular amount of money and keep it separately where you can reach it easily. I have seen people pulling out their wallets inside the Garbagraha and the front varandah. This is risky and is tempting pick pockets. Keep your wallet/purse inside your bag safely.
Carry enough change in the form of 10 rupee notes, 50 rupee notes and 100 rupee notes. People end up by shelling out 100 rupees where 10 rupees would have been sufficient.
Now when you enter the Kali Temple road, you will be approached by persons who will promise you a quick Dharshan.
Now most of these people are touts/dalals/middle-men who have very little to do with the temple.
There two categories in these.
a. Operators who act on behalf of some of the sweet shops. You will know them when they want you to go to the shop first. Here you are asked to buy some Peda or other sweets to be offered as Prasad. Then they take you to the temple.
Some of these shops do have a lot of influence in the temple and they may be able to arrange for a quick Dharshan. But it would cost you a lot of money. Of course there is no guarantee.
You will find a number of local people who make use of these shops which are scattered around the temple. My wife and family do. They provide a place to rest, keep your slippers.
But on busy days they may not be able to help.
You can approach these people if you are in a hurry and would not mind spending money to have a quick Dharshan. But please enquire whether they can take you inside the Garbagraha. No Dharshan from the front varandah or the Nat Mandir.
b. Dalals who hand you over to another Panda for taking you inside the temple. There are some who might take you to the temple. Most of these do not have any influence in the temple. They depend on muscle power. They would take you to the Jor Bangla (the Varandah in the front), muscle their way through the crowd and ask you to have a quick Dharshan. Some of them do not even do that. They take you to the Nat Mandir and ask you to have Dharshan from there. Please avoid these touts. Your experience will not be pleasant.