This 4 ft. x 15 ft. high marble plaque was erected on the eastern gopuram wall in the present Kapaleeswara Temple by eminent citizens of Chennai led by Vidwan Arunai Vadivel Mudaliar in 1990.
The section “Mylapore’s Ancient Past” reads:
“Ptolomey the Greek geographer has referred to Mylapore in his books as ‘Maillarpha’, a well known seaport town with a flourishing trade. Saint Thiruvalluvar, the celebrated author of Thirukkural, the world famous ethical treatise, lived in Mylapore nearly 2000 years ago.
“The Shaivite saints of the 7th century, Saint Sambandar and Saint Appar, have sung about this shrine in their hymns. St. Thomas, one of the apostles of Jesus, is reported to have visited Mylapore in the 2nd century (sic) AD.
“Mylapore fell into the hands of the Portuguese in 1566, when the temple suffered demolition. The present temple was rebuilt about 300 years ago. There are some fragmentary inscriptions from the old temple, still found in the present shrine and in St. Thomas Cathedral.”
We observe that the date for the alleged visit if St. Thomas to Mylapore is wrong. It should read 1st century AD. But the entry is not required and should be removed as Pope Benedict has categorically stated that St. Thomas did not visit South India. The entry on this memorial plaque is misleading and gives a wrong impression to visitors.
The same wrong information about St. Thomas is repeated on the Arulmigu Kapaleeswara Temple website.
We have brought this matter to the attention of the Kapaleeswara Temple executive officer a number of times. He ignores our mail and does not reply to us.
When Hindu temple authorities themselves promote the fiction that St. Thomas visited Mylapore, we cannot expect the San Thome Church authorities to do differently.
The Kapaleeswara Temple executive officer Tiru M. Devendhiran can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 91-44-24641670.