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DAILY NEWS ANALYSIS

  • 03 February, 2021

  • 12 Min Read

Lingaraj Temple destroyed?

Lingaraj Temple destroyed?

About Lingaraj Temple

Lingaraja Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva and is one of the oldest temples in Bhubaneswar, Odisha.

  • The Lingaraja temple is the largest temple in Bhubaneswar.
  • The central tower of the temple is 180 ft (55 m) tall. The temple represents the quintessence of the Kalinga architecture and culminating the medieval stages of the architectural tradition at Bhubaneswar.
  • The temple is believed to be built by the kings from the Somavamsi dynasty, with later additions from the Ganga rulers.
  • The temple is built in the Deula style that has four components namely, vimana (structure containing the sanctum), jagamohana (assembly hall), natamandira (festival hall) and bhoga-mandapa (hall of offerings), each increasing in the height to its predecessor.

  • The temple complex has 50 other shrines and is enclosed by a large compound wall.
  • The central deity of the temple, Lingaraja, is worshipped both as Shiva and Vishnu. The harmony between the two sects of Hinduism, Shaivism, and Vaishnavism, is seen in this temple where the deity is worshipped as Harihara, a combined form of Vishnu and Shiva.

Destruction of Lingaraj temple

  • The controversy over the destruction of ancient monuments around the 11th century Lingaraj Temple in Odisha’s capital Bhubaneswar amid a State-sponsored redevelopment drive, spiralled with the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) stating that irreparable damage had been done to the temple and ancient shrines around it.
  • The Odisha government’s Ekamra Kshetra beautification project is aimed at creating space adjoining the Lingaraj Temple to accommodate around two lakh devotees expected to visit the temple for the festival of Shivaratri in March.
  • The space in front of the ancient temple can now barely accommodate 10,000 to 15,000 devotees.
  • “We find that no standard guidelines have been followed by the project implementation authorities and excavating teams. Irreparable damage has been done to adjoining ancient shrines,” INTACH’s preliminary investigation says.

Source: TH


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