Kalkaji temple, dedicated to goddess kali, is located opposite Nehru Place, near Okhla railway station. The shrine is also known as ‘Jayanti Peetha’ or ‘Manokamna Siddha Peetha’ which literally means “the shrine where all desires get fulfilled”. As per the legend, it was at the site of the temple where Kalika Devi was born. The nine day festival of Navratri is celebrated with great fervour where a huge fair is organised at the Kalkaji temple.
Although the temple is considered to be an ancient one, the oldest portions of the current structure cannot be dated before 1764 C.E. The present structure is believed to have been constructed by the Marathas with additions been done by Mirza Raja Kidar Nath in the year 1816. The latter was a Peshkar in the court of Mughal Emperor Akbar II.
Part of the Late Mughal- Maratha wars, the First Battle of Delhi was fought in 1737 between the Maratha general Baji Rao I and Mughal Emperor Muhammad Shah Rangeela. However, the Maratha army retreated to Pune. It was during the Second Battle of Delhi, fought in 1757, that the Marathas marked their presence in Delhi for a longer period of time. This time, the Marathas were under the control of Raghunath Rao who fought with the Rohillas under Najib-ud-Daula. The Marathas emerged victorious and became the defacto rulers of Delhi with the Mughal Emperor functioning merely as a titular head