Khidrapur: The Pillar Temple
This temple is located on the Maharashtra and Karnataka border and is carved out of one rock
Khidrapur is a small village located at the edge of Maharashtra and Karnataka. Looking at the village it is hard to believe that it houses such a wonderful piece of art.
Getting to Khidrapur is a long drive through unsteady roads. The journey though is worth it. The road takes you through unending fields.
The fields are so endless as though it were a carpet of green rolled out on the brownish-black soil.
After the long voyage, what one gets to see pleases the eye. The temple is carved out of one black rock and features many peculiarities.
The priest at the temple was quiet informative and willing to share his knowledge about the beautiful temple.
The temple was built in the 6th Century A.D. and it is now about 14 centuries old! Inspite of its old age it still stands firm on the ground unlike our modern buildings which need repairs after every few years!
The temple’s black stone, it seems, was brought from the Sahyadri mountain range in western India. The construction work began with the Ganesh Column which has an idol of Ganesh at its base. Along with the Ganesh column other three columns make a square formation called Kirtimandap.
The speciality of the Khidrapur temple is that it has about 108-120 columns and was built by rulers of three different dynasties- the bottom by Chalukyas, middle by Shingendevra and the top by Yadav dynasty.
It is said that it took the artisans about 200-300 years to build and carve out the temple. The beauty of the intricately carved out temple is its architecture and of course its pillars. The pillars inside the temple have Panchatantra stories carved out on them. They depict the characters with detail.
The outer walls have 96 elephants carved out in them.
The temple structure has four tabhas- outermost-Swarghmandap, second- Sabhamandap, third – Antara and the Gabhara- where the idol of God is placed.
Kopeshwar is another name for Lord Shankar and Dopeshwar is another name for Lord Vishnu. They are worshipped here.
On the dividing partition between the Sabhamandap and Antara, the wall is flanked with the statues of Jay and Vijay. Of these idols, the idol of Vijay has fallen through the ages.
Adilshah destroyed the main idol of the two Lords which have been replaced with metals idols now.
This temple is visited by around 1000- 1500 visitors on Sundays.
There are few peculiar facts about this temple. The first being- inspite of having an idol of Kopeshwar, the Nandi is not in the temple but 12km away in the Karnataka state.
Furthermore, the Nandi faces the north while Lord Kopeshwar faces south. The explanation of this it seems is the Sati story.
On the 5th of May (Today), the sun’s golden rays fall on the Pindh.
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