Place to Visit

   Baba Nrusinghanath...

 

Nrusinghanath temple is one of the beautiful places in Western Odisha. It is situated at the foot hills of Gandhamardhan Hill in Bargarh district. Nrusinghanath temple divided into two parts: the first being the seat of the Lord Nrusinghnath, the second allotted to Jagamohan (anti-chamber having 3 gates and each supported by 4 pillars).

Baijal Singh Dev, the King of Patnagarh, laid the foundation of this historic temple in 1313 A.D. According to Oriya and Devnagari inscriptions, the temple was built by Patna King in early 15th century AD. The temple is constructed in Orissan style of architecture. It is only 45 feet in height. There is a beautiful story behind of this temple.

Around six hundred years ago, a woman named Jamuna Kandhuni as referred in the book "Nrusingha Charitra" composed a Kavya that sings the glory of Marjara Keshari in regard to suppression and repression of torture and tyranny of Musika Daitya. According to the legend, when people were greatly afflicted by Musika Daitya (the incarnate Mouse Demon), Vishnu Mani in the appearance(Incarnation) of Marjara Keshari, in His Feline Form, ran to eat the demonic mouse form - Musika Daitya who never came out from the tunnel and Marjara Keshari waited from that day. The temple is reputed from that day with this mythological history. This story is symbolic of the grounding the demonic evil power of tyranny and torture that never dared to come out further and Lord Nrusinghanath alias Marjara Keshari has been guarding it since then.

According to Huen Tsang, the Chinese traveler, this place was a centre of Buddhist scriptural learning. Lord Nrushinghanath is a much-adored deity of Orissa and a great fair is held in his honour on the 14th day of bright fortnight in the month of Vaisakha.

Here one can also visit Chal dhar (400mtr from Temple), Bhim Dhar (425mtr from Temple), Sita Kunda (500mtr from Temple), Panchupandav (1.5km from Temple), Kapil Dhar (4km from Temple), Supta Dhar (7km from Temple), Satyaamb (9km from Temple), Bhim Madua (11km from Temple), Happy Point (12km from Temple). There are some beautiful small & also big streams near the temple.

Nrusinghanath Temple is about 110 km west of Baragarh. Khariar Road Railway Station is the nearest railway station. Here also a Beautiful Garden created just near the temple, where Lord Krishna different avatar shown and also a 28ft Hanuman Statue created inside the center of Garden.

There is a big mela held on Nrusingha-chatrurdasi day during Vaishakha shukla chaturdashi (in May), which attracts thousands of pilgrims from far and near. From Chatisgarh, Bihar, West Bengal & many other districts of Odisha people came to see the mela.  This is the best place for natural lovers. In the opposite side of this temple Harishankar is situated. In the time of Sravana(July & August) the devotees are going by foot from Harishankar to Nrusinghanath on the route of hill & also from Nrusinghanath to Harishankar. In Nrusinghanath temple there are many festivals observed in every occasion. Such as all Ekadashis, Chaturdasis, Sankranti, Shivaratri, Maagha Mela, Nrusingha Chaturdasi Mela etc. 

Reported by
Pragnya Priyadarshini Saraf
Group Editor

   The Forgotten place Sisupalgarh...

 

Speaks about the historical importance of the ancient time, the Sisupalgarh was excavated in 1947-1948 by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). It may remain only in the pages of history as unauthorised constructions. This fort is now to in destroyed condition. It was the capital of Kalinga king Kharavela in around 100 A.D.

Sisupalgarh has been declared to be of National importance in 1958 under ASI. It has a 2000-year-old protective wall, measuring 1,200x1, 160 metres and portions of the surviving wall come are as high as 12 metres. A Mauryan period site, the tall pillars, some old walls and structures are still there to see but they are now in destroyed condition. The sohala khamba (16 pillars) where the king kept his elephants and horses safely, among those 16 pillars some pillars are destroyed and some of them still there to see. There was a big wall around the fort which covers the fort and also protects the fort from enemies.
“In the early eighties, former ASI chief and original excavator of Sisupalgarh, B.B. Lal, was in Bhubaneswar to see his old excavation site. He also admitted that the 300 BC to 350 AD timeline declared by ASI may be extended much more on both sides,’’ Rath said. Stating that the Hati Gumpha (Elephant Cave) inscription of Udayagiri in Bhubaneswar says that the Sisupalgarh area was the Kalinga Nagar of Kharvela’s capital city, Rath said even his own research has indicated that there was an amphitheatre in the north-west side of the walled structure near Mahabhoi Sasan. “But with the remains of the structure is now here to be seen today,’’ he said, adding that the state government should immediately take steps so that the remaining portions of the fort could be excavated soon. By Archeological Survey of India the excavations was started and excavations have reveled 18 stone pillars, pottery, terracotta, ornaments, bangles gold etc.

Archaeological sites tell us many things about our past and the new generation can observe the past through historical sites such as Sisupalgarh. Thus, this site could be a great place for school and college students to visit and learn about Orissa’s history. If the ASI department do not take any steps for the protection of Sisupalgarh then the tourism centre of culture and architecture loss one of its monuments.

Reported by
Pragnya Priyadarshini Saraf
Group Editor

   Craft village: Rahurajpur...

 

A number of Tourists visit the village of Raghurajpur to see the rich arts and crafts made by a community of artisans, who produce different varieties of handicrafts items. The traditional artists clustered in the village; about 50 km from Bhubaneswar have revived the traditional Pattachitra art form.

The Pattachitra artists were settled by the Gajapati king of Puri to paint divine trinity on specially treated clothes to be hung inside the sanctum of Lord Jagannath Temple for the darshan of devotees during Anavasar when the Lord steps out of temple along with brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra to mingle with the masses on the auspicious occasion of Rath Yatra. Originating from this tradition, this art gradually developed and gained popularity. The State Tourism Department with the assistance of Ministry of Tourism, Government of India has taken the initiative to develop Raghurajpur as a craft village with a bid to revive the age old art. The village has been declared as a heritage village by Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH).