Friday, November 12, 2010

                                         ICHAK (HAZARIBAGH)

Ichak is a small village about 15 kms NE of Hazaribagh town in Jharkhand of East India. The village has innumerable temples built by the Singhs who ruled the region for over 200 years. Ichak was one of their one time capitals among three others. 

The Singhs moved from Ramgarh and established their capital here prior to their shift of their capital to Padma a few kms up North. The gate of their once magnificent palace  still exists today in the main market. That the massive gate with it large dome once stood with much grace and magnificence can yet be perceived though it is in shambles. 

The huge domed gate to the palace. Shot from a rooftop

Today the local market has grown around this marvellous gate.

It is believed that at one time there were about 174 temples here but today barely a few remain of which nearly all lie in utter neglect; many of them devoid of any idols which may have been stolen and perhaps have found a passage out of the country. Still the temples reveal their magnanimity and  splendour  they once commanded. The pictures are provided at the end of the blog.

There are two akharas here ; Bada akahara and Chota akahara of which the former is well maintained and the later is in ruinous condition.

The once magnificent gate of the now desolate chota akahara.

Chota Akhara

The marbled idol of Sita, Rama and Lakhshmana in the chota akhara.

Ichak is also famous for its tanks and ponds apart from its mouth smacking Balusahis; a kind of circular shaped sweetmeat. 

The eminent lip smacking balushahis of Ichaq.

Below are photographs of only a few of the many temples which lie uncared and unnoticed by the common public and the government : 

The temples built by the Singhs perhaps from about the early 18th century are evidence of their splendid contribution to temple building architecture in the region. The style of the temples reveal the Nagara and the Bengal styles of architectures.The mosque type domes emphasize the Moghul influence on these temples.

The famous 'Sun Temple" or the 'Surya Mandir'

This is a tunnel built by the Singhs next to the "Surya mandir" above. The entrance to the tunnel is at the left hand farthest corner shown by the arrow. The tunnel is believed to lead to the king's palace about 15 kms away; regarded to have been once used by the queens of the palace to conduct puja here and retreat through the tunnel back to the palace.

The Bhairav temple

The Mahadeo temple
Lord Bhairava sitting on a 'Kukura' or a dog.
The Bhairav temple in Purana Ichak houses the diety of Bhairav on a dog

The profile of the Mahadeo Temple
The Bhagwati Temple complex

This mosque like structure is in actuality a temple of the Bhagwati Temple complex

An unknown temple, its idol stolen, the ancient temple is in compete ruins.

One of the many tanks; this one is called Rani talaw

The possible DC office of the British period of 19th cent and some call it the old hospital...wonder which is true.