Saturday, December 31, 2011

Changavateshwar & Sangameshwar temples, Saswad : A Photo Feature

Changavateshwar temple
Venue: Saswad, 40km from Pune.
History: This temples Shivlinga was said to have been originally installed by Sage Changadeva(12th/13th cen AD). Jeernoddhar of temple by Sardar Ambuji Purandare in 1700 AD.

pic: mandovara
Pic:sthambha shilpa depicting Sharabha
Note: Temple walls & pillars have carvings depicting Gods,Godesses,Celestial beings, stories from ancient texts etc.

Pic: Nandi placed in the antarala
Pic: sabhamandapa

pic: garbhagriha doorframe as seen from the vestibule
pic:sthambha shilpa
pic: a woman churning curds
pic:malayuddha shilp
pic:Vanar shilp
pic: Sharabha shilpa
pic:dancing Apsaras
pic: Mayur shilp

Sangameshwar temple, Saswad. Built at the confluence of the Karha and Chamli rivers.

 Pic: Samadhi of Peshwa Balaji Vishwanath Bhat


Pic:temple shikhara & mandovara
pic:shikhara of an adjoining minor temple
pic: Nandi seated in the sabhamandap
pic:rest rooms
pic: Sangameshwar temple is built alongside the confluence of Karha & Chamli rivers
pic:rearside minor temple
pic: Nandi outside a minor temple behind Sangameshwar
Pic:Godaji Jagtaps samadhi outside Sangameshwar temple Saswad.Godaji Jagtap had struck down Muse Khan, second in command of Fateh Khan (Adilshahi commander) when the latter had attacked fort Purandar.

Pic: Mastani talao (as seen from Dive ghat: enroute Pune Saswad road) built by Punyashlok Ahilyabai Holkar in late18th century.

Photographs : Abhijit Rajadhyaksha

Friday, August 26, 2011

Tamhini ghat : Photos

Monsoons is the time when the heavens descend upon the Sahyadris. The clouds move down from their lofty abodes for a rendezvous with these mountains. The Sahyadris too dress up for this festivity, draping themselves with green robes, adorning a turban of ethereal mist.
The water streams, the lakes and the ponds also ornament the entire region.
The gushing water falls on the rocks creating  percussion beats as if  apprising all that the celestial guests have arrived. This enthuses a restless energy in the atmosphere creating a feeling of perfect bliss.
This is the time when Tamhini ghat exposes its abounding finery creating a visual treat for the people to see.
Tamhini ghat is a mountain pass connecting the plateau region near Pune to the coastal region of the Konkan.
It is located around sixty kilometers from Pune.

The route being : Pune- Chandni Chowk-Pirangut-Mulshi- Tamhini ghat.
In the monsoons , Tamhini ghat provides the perfect picnic spot for many vacationers arriving here from Pune and its adjoining regions.
They get to enjoy the scenic delights that Tamhini ghat offers and the pleasures of reliving their childhood by drenching in the drizzle and bathing under water chutes.
The Tamhini ghat further joins the coastal plains of the Konkan region in Maharashtra. As one goes further one gets a vantage view of the green rice fields across the road.
Tamhini ghat is also quite near to other tourist attractions like Fort Raigad, Gandharpale caves and Shivthar ghal.

Photographs and Text : Abhijit Rajadhyaksha

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Gondeshwar Temple : A Photo Feature

Gondeshwar is a 12/13th century hindu temple carved out in black basalt stone.

It is located at Sinnar near Nasik , off Pune Nasik highway (26kms from Nasik).

There are different claims towards the origin of this temple. As per some sources the temple was said to have been built by the Seuna Yadava king Govinda, hence was named Gondeshwar. However a 13th cen. marathi text Leelacharitra (by Chakradhara, founder of Mahanubhava sect) mentions a merchant named Govinda ( Govindeshwar=Gondeshwar) as having commissioned the temple. There is a mention of Yadava king Mahadeva (1261+) arriving in the town of Sinnar during the time of Chakradhara.
Note, there was a Bhilama matha in Sinnar (probably patronised by the Yadava king Bhillama).

The temple has been built as per the Panchayatana style with the Shiva temple being the main one and surrounded by minor temples as that of Ganesh, Parvati, Vishnu and Surya.

The temple can be classified as the bhumija nagara type with the shikhara having a central frame that tapers on all sides and surrounded by columns of smaller spires.

The temple is a wondorous display of art in stone. It has for testimony some amazing carvings and sculptures depicting  stories from the Puranas and epics like the Mahabharata etc. The walls display sculptures of Devas,Devis, Apsaras, Yakshas,Gandharvas etc, that have weathered time to retain a semblance of their  beauty.

This temple despite its enormous historical and cultural value lies hitherto unknown, virtually hidden from the outside world. But that also enables its tranquility and existence to lie so very conserved.

Additional photographs:

Acknowledgements: Amol Bankar
Text and Photographs : Abhijit Rajadhyaksha