5th September, 2022 EXTRA TOPIC OF THE DAY
Copyright infringement not intended
- Recently, some pilgrims offered prayers inside the Martand Temple in the Kashmir Valley of Jammu and Kashmir.
- It is an Archaeological Survey of India-protected (ASI) monument.
- Recently, Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor participated in a ‘Navgrah Ashtamangalam Puja’ inside the Martand Temple.
- The ASI objected and highlighted that no permission was granted for the ceremony.
- The Temple was built by the Karkota dynasty king Lalitaditya Muktapida, who ruled Kashmir from 725 AD to 753 AD.
- The temple is dedicated to Martand, the Sun god.
- The temple had mighty grey stone walls, and its courtyard was filled with river water.
- The central courtyard was initially filled with water supplied by a canal from the river Lidar.
- The temple walls are built of “huge blocks of evenly dressed grey limestone by making use of lime mortar.”
- The Temple has three distinct chambers: The mandapa, the garbhagriha, and the antralaya—probably the only three-chambered temple in Kashmir.
- The temple is built in a unique Kashmiri style, but the temple is also influenced by Classical Greco-Roman, Buddhist-Gandharan, and North Indian styles.
- Some of the walls bear clear carvings of deities.
- The temple is ringed by a row of pillars—the peristyle common in Kashmiri temple architecture.
- Some historians believe that the Temple is believed to be demolished by Sultan Sikandar Shah Miri, who ruled Kashmir from 1389 to 1413, although several historians hold a different opinion.
- Many historians blame earthquakes, faults in the temple’s masonry, and the simple passage of time in an area prone to weather excesses.