Jagannath Temple, Hyderabad

Jagannath Temple ("Jagan" means Universe and "Nath" means Lord, thus "Lord Of Universe"), the temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna (one of the incarnation of Lord Vishnu). This temple is said to be a replica of original Jagannath Temple of Puri (Orissa) in context of design/pattern and not in size. Kalinga Cultural Trust is the one who took the charge to construct this Hyderabad version of Puri's temple on 3000 square yard area plot next to Tilangana Bhavan (Banjara Hills). Completed this year around Feb/March 2009 is still at its nascent stage to get its popularity all over the India (Not much information is available over web, still haven't got its name on vast so called "Top Attractions of Hyderabad" sites).

The most attracting portion of this temple is its "Shikra" (the peak/top) measuring around 70 feet in height (shown on the first pic). The red color it has got is due to the usage of sand stone (around 600 tonnes were brought from Orissa which is being used to build this whole architecture) and around 60 stone carvers got the blessing to carve this temple. 

The construction were said to be taken in temple premises only. The temple is raised on the platform which is 8-10 feet in height and this 8-10 feet portion is now being occupied as temple Office (left pic shows the window and the door of the ground office). 

While the main structure of temples houses the Lord Krishna along with his brother Balabhadra and Subhadra, it also has five small surrounding temple  to house Lord Ganesh (left to the main entrance), Lord Shiva (in front along the steps), Goddess Bhimala (incarnation of Goddess Paravathi, on left back side), Goddess Laxmi (back right side) and two shrines side by side is Navgraha (Nine Planet Lords) and Shri Hanuman (on middle right side). Each of them having a dedicated priest. There are total 3 entrances to this temple , the main entrance opens right in front of the main temple as shown on the second pic top right.

The temple is located just adjacent to the road and is quit nearer to Jubli Hills, from Hi Tech I took shared auto upto Jubli Hills (15 min) and from there another shared auto directly  to this temple (10 min). There is no entrance fee, no guide's or any sort of brochures. The temple is not opened for all time, 6-12 AM and 5-10 PM is what the Sunday timings, I don't remember the week day timings. Photo shoot is not allowed inside the temple but outside.

The exterior carving is worth appraising, though its not at very minute level but very impressive. The exteriors are completely made out of sand stone but the inner portion of sanctum sanctorum is a plain brick wall. The pillars are made out of sand stone, and the sanctum sanctorum is separated by three entrance gate inside the temple which is carved out of sand stone. The inner most entrance gate has carving of nine incarnation of Lord Vishnu on the top. The side is occupied by big cobra like sculpt which runs along the perimeter of the gate on both sides. Additional carvings are not that deep and if not looked closely then will look like as it was washed away by air.The 3 idols of Lord Jagannath (Krishna), Balabhadra (his brother) and Subadhra (his sister) are all alike the Idols residing in Puri's temple. Jagannath temple is unique in the sense, all the Idols are carved out of Margosa (Neem) wood instead of stone as found in all other temples. The story behind this is the Lord himself ordered Indrayumna, the king of Malava in Sata Yuga to construct a temple with his Idol made of wood which he will find it floating on the sea. The King found the wood and the sculpture (Vishwa Karma, the architect of Gods) to carve the Idols. Well I am not going deep into the story but this was the reason behind the Idol being made out of wood. This wood was also bought from the Orissa. Probably the only temple (all Jagannath Temple) to have Idols made of wood.

Interesting aspect of this temple architecture and of the original one in Puri is, the exteriors are embellished with some amorous sculpture of male and female the same way as we have in Khujaraho Temples (pic on right has 5 such sculpt, one of them is a Lion ridding on an Elephant). There are plenty of theories or concepts behind these sculptures on temple walls as I read on web 
- These sculpt represents the external desire of human and one needs to raise above all these desires to reach to GOD.
- Some one said, these are carved on exteriors so to protect it from lighting, rains etc as Lord of  water  Indra as himself being a great sex admirer won't destroy anything which itself shows as a sex lover.
- As lord Krishna himself was a great Casanova and thus sculpture was made according to his very nature.


Also If looked closely, the stone on the back side is little dark in color as compared to the rest of the portions of the temple (see 4th pic from the top). Floors are completely made of granite. The outer architecture from distant almost look like a plastic due to red color, but closely this was well polished and is strong. The pic on left is the top of the main entrance gate and the pillar with sculpt in greeting posture is just in-front of the main steps.



The only distracting thing around in this pic is the Tilangana Bhavan.





See few more pics at

http://www.flickr.com/photos/shekharstravel/sets/72157622700184391/


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