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(348) Step-Well and Temple, Thandla

jha1There is a step-well of Mughal period to the east of the city by which there existed an ancient Hanuman Mandir. Six new temples have been built in two rows here. The steps leading into the step-well have been closed. The temples on both sides are built into beautiful rows.Made of bricks the step-well is very beautiful and attractive. Rooms are built on all four sides inside it. The niches, arches, arch pillars etc are made of lime mortar. The darjabandi is also very beautiful. In the front portion there are three rows in niches on both sides. Each row comprises three niches.

The first temple enshrines a five-faced Shivlinga (Pashupatinath) with jalahari, which is made of black stones. A Nandi is installed in front of it. A modern Shiva image is also placed nearby. A Devi image is installed near the step-well. Elephants are shown performing abhishek on this image. A pillared dev kulika near it enshrines a Surya image and a Parvati image besides a mutilated Nandi. Thandla also has many other old temple dedicated to Kashi Vishvanath, Pattabhi Sita Ram, Bare Ramji, Ganesh, Laxminarayan, Bihariji, Bitthalji and Keshari Nath.

(349) Shiva Temple, Devalfalia

jha2There is a grand Shiva temple of the 11th century A.D. near a water source to the west of village Devalfalia. Architecturally, it can be compared to the temples of Paramara period at Malwai, Bhagor and Jamali. The gate of garbha-griha and shuknala are broken. The western portion of the temple is considerably damaged. There was a shikhar made of bricks above three manjaris, which is now damaged. The sirdal above the five-jamb gate is also not available. Right from the plinth the Mandir is of Bhumij style. A Gandhi-chabutara is built on the ardha-mandapa. The five-jamb gate has been separated in two and three sections, respectively. The two-jamb right portion is survived by its base only and the images to the right are mutilated. There might have been images of Paricharks, Upasika holding a ghanti, Shiva and Ganga. To the left there are images of Yamuna. Paricharika, Chaturbhuj Shiva (varad mudra, trishul, naag, kamandala) and sculptures of Upasika and Yaksha holding a Nakulas in the two-jamb. The jambs are decorated with floral and leaf patterns and there are pillars with kirthimukhas. The plinth is carved with figures of khur, kumbha, kalash, bhadra and karna, which is of Prncharath type. Every rath is in the shape of a pillar up to jangha and above it there are formations of manjaris and floral patterns. There are manjaris up to three bandhas.

To the east of Bhadrakarna, there is an image of Andhakasura Vadh, while a Nataraj is carved to the south and that of Chamunda to the west. Above them, figures of kapotali and pillar tops are carved. The plates to the north are carved with divine couples, Sursundaris, Yakshas, Gandharvas and Nayak-Nayikas.

(350) Shiva Temple, (Malwai) Alirajpur

The temple is located at a distance of about three km from Alirajpur and it can be reached by road.

jha3The east-facing 12th century A.D. temple is now survived by only garbha-griha. The jangha portion of this Bhumij style temple is carved with images of different divinities. The lintel-piece of entrance gate is carved with Ganesha image. There are seven shakhas each on both sides of the gate. Paricharaks and Paricharikas holding lotus are carved below the shakhas.

The garbha-griha is devoid of any image. A Shivlinga might have been installed there. A Gomukh system is built for outlet of water from garbha-griha.

There is urushringa decoration on all four sides of the shikhar portion and the shikhar has been developed with the support of ardha-shikhar.