Tuesday, October 18, 2011


All along the way Shikaripur in Shimoga district we see board proclaiming it as the land of sharana-meaning many veerashiva saints were born here and Just before Balligavi lies Ududati or Udugani-the birth place of one of the greatest women of our land-Akka Mahadevi. A prominent saint of veerashaivim along with Shri. Basavanna, she probably was the only women to  throw away her clothes. To set foot on this ground, where she was born was a wonderful. A temple stands at this location. 

Balligavi is about 12 kms from Shikaripura  and very close to the Kadamba capital Banavasi.   An area rich with history is aslo purported to be the birth place of the Hoysala queen Shantala.

The Kedarareshwara temple- a beautiful piece of architecture, the guide here explains the foundation to have been laid by the western Chalukyas and the super structure by the Hoysalas.

 The  annual festival on

The resplendent emblem of Hoysala

The ceremonial car-decorated and pulled along the streets of the village once a year
In the vicinity of this village there are supposed to be many other temples in ruins, A museum adjacent stores the sculptures found

This is the Bherundeshwara temple situated right in the centre of the village. Said to have been erected by a  General of the Chalukya, its a tough task to photograph the sculpture inside the locked doors, but is one of the best I have seen. The lower part are the legs of a human and the upper past that of the ferocious double headed bird swalloing humans in its huge beaks turned away in the opposite direction. The anger on the face of the bird, humans stuffed in the mouth and holding more in the hands,I know not the significance of this ferociousness.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Monuments of Ikkeri and Keldi

Sagar town in Shimoga District can be an ideal base to visit many a tourist site-Jog falls being  prominent on the list. Among the many historic monuments, I could though manage Ikkeri and Keldi. Sagar itself is a beautiful town - a tinge urbane and the idyllic slow pace of a village. This was one place I felt would be ideal to settle down .
Ikkeri is only a few km away from Sagara and the Prominent among the Keldi Nayakas who  ruled from Ikkeri is Rani Chennama, who is said to  have given shelter to for a long time to Shivaji's son Rajaram

Aghoreshwar Temple Ikkeri
A first look at the mantap, would make believe it to be mausoleum of a Muslim saint, but then here is Nandi - facing Shiva as usual. This explains the influence of the Muslim architecture which was widely adopted by the later Vijayanagar kings and their feudals.

Spectacular carving outside and inside especially in the sanctum sanatorium  is a treat to see.                                                                                                                                                      

The complex has a couple of smaller shrines  and is  littered with many  ruined sculptures. The best is this  one, Beautiful carved sandals is probably an indication to the beauty of the sculptures had it survived. I wonder who could these three scandal represent

On the other side of Sagar, again a few km away is Keldi. The Nayaka ruled from here, before they shifted their capital to Ikkeri.

Rameshwara temple at Keladi- The miniature temples carved on the wall - a style of  kalyani chalukyas?   

The best thing here is the mythical two headed bird called Gandaberunda in kannada on the ceiling  (also forms a part of the  official emblem of Karnataka State). What could be the significance of the ferocious bird ?-clutching elephants in its claws and lions in its beak .