Home > General, Purulia, Wiki Explores Purulia > Krosjhuri, Purulia District, an amalgamation of old and new

Krosjhuri, Purulia District, an amalgamation of old and new

Krosjhuri, Purulia District

An amalgamation of old and new

See also: Wiki Explores Purulia

Purulia District, located on the western edge of West Bengal, is known for its breath taking natural beauty. Places like Boronti, Murguma and Ayodha Hills have always been popular weekend gateways for tourist from Kolkata.

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Siddheshwar Shiva Temple, Krosjhuri, Purulia District

But unknown to many Purulia has a rich history and heritage dating back to the 10th – 13th century CE. A flourishing Jain settlement flourished in the western part of West Bengal covering the present districts of Purulia, Bankura and Jhargram. During this period they have built numerous brick and stone temples, following the Oriya Duel style architecture.

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Statues of lions flank the main entrance

Purulia had the largest concentration of these temples, although many of them have crumbled to dust, only a hand full have survived the test of time and still towers above the rural landscape of Purulia district.

These towering temples, built of both brick and stone, can still be seen in the villages of Telkupi, Pakbirra, Para, Deulghata, Deuli and Banda.

Sadly many of the these temples have been reconstructed using a combination of ancient and modern materials and serve as active Hindu temples. Siddheshwar Shiva Temple, Krosjhuri is one such example and happens to be a protected monument under the West Bengal State Archaeology.

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Lion and other statues at side entrance

Krosjhuri is located about 42 km from Purulia Town and lies in the Kasipur Thana, Kasipur is just 13 km away. The nearest station is Indrabil. (Google Map location of Siddheshwar Shiva Temple, Krosjhuri)

The rectangular temple is surrounded by a high wall with two entrances. The main entrance is flanked two lions of Odiya style guarding the entrance.

The entrance on the side also has similar lion statues along with a couple of other statues. Several ancient statues have been collected on the neighborhood and kept in the complex, with a few embedded on the outer boundary wall.

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Siddheshwar Shiva Temple, Krosjhuri

Most prominent of the statues on the outer wall are Hero’s Stone (Bir Stambha), sword held warrior (hero) topped with a lion (symbol of bravery) relief.

The main templeis rectangular in shape and has a small spire. It is a new structure but remains of a old stone wall still exist on one side.

It is only a small portion and looks totally out of place, but the stone work, shaped like pitchers, have resemblance with Banda Deul.

Apart from the structural part the old section also contains scattered stone pieces of a door frame, probably the one from the original temple.

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Portion of the old temple and fragments of door frame, Siddheshwar Shiva Temple, Krosjhuri, Purulia District

Although in fragments it contains beautiful ornamentation and reminds one of the door frame of Ratnagiri of Diamond Triangle, Odisha.

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Giant Shiva Linga, Siddheshwar Shiva Temple, Krosjhuri

The new temple houses a giant shiva linga towering to a height of 90 cm and has a diameter of about 12 cm.

The lingam probably dates back to the time of the original temple, so was it a Hindu Temple or lingams part of Jain rituals? or was it a place of mutula worship of Jain and Hindus? historians are not quiet sure.

Since the foundation plaque of the original temple has not been foundthe historians are not sure about the exact date of construction of the original temple.

Apart from the temple the complex houses a another structure housing some age old statues, in the process protecting them from the elements of nature.

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Statues of Krosjhuri. L – R: Hero’s Stone, Kali, Ten handed figure and seated figure on a lotus

Among the statues is a an interesting Kali statue, a ten handed figure resting on a buffalo and a figure seated on a lotus.

Note:

This tour was part of Wiki Explores Purulia and was funded by Wikipedia West Bengal User Group

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  1. January 9, 2019 at 12:03 AM

    Mesmerizing reading.

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