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First Notified Monuments

Shiv Temple    District :Balod   Place : Gurur

This stone built small temple is situated in the village Gurur on a road leading to Balod from Dhamtari via village Purur, at a distance of about 16 kms in Durg district. It faces north direction. It consists of sanctum with small mandapa based upon four pillars. There is a depiction of standing river goddess on left doorjamb, the right one is flat but it contains the carving of Lata-Vallary motif on the upper part of both jambs. This temple was built most probably by the rulers of Som-Vamshi dynasty of Kankera native state in 13th-14th cent. A.D. This is in good condition of preservation and offers a good example of temple architecture of contemporary period

Temple complexes of Deepadih    District :Sarguja   Place : Kusmi

Deepadih, located 72 kms. from Ambikapur on Kusmi road leading to Jharkhand, in tribal area, is an important site, full of archaeological wealth. This ancient beautiful temple city was situated on the confluence of rivers Kanhar and Golfulla, the tributaries of river Rehand. This site is famous for its natural beauty. The literal meaning of Deepadih is habitation on high mound. The ruined structures and old remains scattered in the radius of about 1 km. indicate that Deepadih was an important cultural centre which flourished from 7th-13th cent. A.D. Debris-clearance operation was conducted by the State Department of Archaeology many temple sites and valuable sculptures were unearthed during this operation. This sites is now identified as an important archaeological site and tourist centre.

Historical background of this site is not clear. The only one stone inscription, found here, is defaced and is not readable. According to local myth Samat Raja was the ruler of Samat-Sarna. Tangi Nath a ruler of Distt. Palamu, Bihar invaded Samat Sarna. Samat Raja was defeated and killed while his queens jumped in baodi and scarified their lives. Most possibly this incident indicates the invasion of rulers of Kalchuris of Tripuri Seat.

Temples of Samat Sarna group contain special importance. In this group there is a remains of Large Shiva Temple facing the east direction. A stone-built door is richly ornamented and very artistic. There is a depiction of river goddesses, Ganga and Yamuna, including decorative motives seated Gaja  Lakshmi is shown on Lalatalimba Images of Kartikeya, Sixteen-armed Vishnu Varaha, Mahishasur-mardini, Bhairav, Ganesh and of Gauri are on display along with decorated pillars in Mandapa.

Remains of Chamunda temple are square in shape where the image of Chamunda was installed. Near this temple in another Shiva temple images of Shiva Pratihara and river goddesses on door-jambs have been noticed. On the eastern portion there is a platform of Shiva-Panchaytan-temple built by the Somavanshi ruler  indicative  of  art  style  of  that  period.  Apart  from this in this complex there are plenty of architectural remains built in the period of Pala-Vansha of Bengal and Kalchuris of Tripuri. In the northern portion of the complex there is a stepped square Baodi. Actually, the holy water of this Baodi was used for abhiseka purposes

Borja Tila Temple group of the ruined temples is a second groups. Remains of big Sun temple is a main structure and the remains of residential  monastaries are also visible. In front of temples of Borja group a third group of temples is located near old tank called Rani Pokhar (ancient Rani-Pushkar). Small-sized four temples were built here but only platform is available. Rani-Pokhar is a historical tank in rectangular shape. Ancient ghat or pachari were made of stones in all directions.

           

On the way from Deepadih to Uraon Tola, near school-building fourth group of temples is found where three ruined temples exist. Among them huge Jalahari built in stone was installed. There is a depiction of images of god and goddesses, erotic couples, Nayikayen and other decorative motives on standing pillars.

Another important Shiva  temple of this group is situated in Uraon Tola. This temple contains sanctum, antaral and mandapa. Adhisthan of the temple is very artistic. Decoration of serpent-creeper is in the tradition of Somavanshi art. many sculptures and decorated architectural pieces are displayed here.

 

Chaila Hill is also an important place, worth a visit, 6 km in south of the village Deepadih. The word chaila means chiseling. Architectural slabs and stone were chiseling here and sent to the Deepadih. In one rock there is an inscription Oni namo Vishvakarmay. It indicates that after prayer of God Vishva-Karma the artists on the sculptor started the Chiselled in mass scale for temple building purpose.

After keen observation of the remains of Deepadih, it is supposed that this area was under rule of Somvanshi kings of South-Kosal in 7th-8th cent. A.D. In 1st phase in their regime few temples were made. After that Pala rulers and Kalchuris of Tripuri seat were also ruled this region and temples made in plenty.

 

In connection with reconstruction of cultural history of Chhattisgarh the art, architecture iconography   and   inscriptions   found  at  Deepadih  contain  special  importance.  The  loose  and detached objects and antiquities were collected and kept in display in local Sculpture-Shed. Among them the sculptures of Bhairava, Shiva-attendants, Brahma, Uma-Maheshvara, Mother Goddess, Ganesha, Vishnu, Surya, Hari-Hara, Chamunda, Shiva holding parashu, Kartikeya are remarkable and contain balanced measurement, grace and gesture.

Seeing the archaeological wealth and natural scenery visitors become and roamed around  in a particular period. The climate of this site is healthy and environment is also good. For making eternal contacts with Cultutral Heritage of this site and for promotion of tourism this site is an ideal place which can be developed in this tribal belt. This important site is declared a protected site. The Government is taking steps for conservation, development, security and beautification of this site seriously.

Gandheshwar Temple    District :Mahasamund   Place : Sirpur

Gandheshwar Temple is located on the west bank of river Mahanadi in village Sirpur in Mahasamund district. It is important from religious and archaeological point of view. The temple is built in Maratha style. I has garbhgriha, antral and mandapa with sixteen pillars. Presently this temple is covered by modern wall. The wall of river end three inscription of Mahashiv Gupta Balarjun are fixed. The image of lord Budha, Natraja, Uma-Maheswar etc. are also exhibit in the temple campus. On the basis of archaeological evidences the original temple may be assignable to 7th-8th Cent. A.D.