In news– Recently the Union Minister of Commerce visited the Sun temple at Martand.
About Martand Sun temple-
- It is situated 8 Kilometers from Anantnag town in Mattan area (originally called Martand or Bhawan) in the southern part of Kashmir.
- It is also known as Pandou Laidan.
- Martand is another Sanskrit synonym for Surya.
- The temple is one of the earliest known sun temples much older than Konark (Odisha) and Modhera (Gujarat).
- The temple was built by King Lalitaditya during the 8th century and is considered to be a mirror of the art and skill of Kashmiri Hindus.
- As per Tareekh-e-Hassan (the oldest History of Kashmir) there was a city named Babul in the Karewas of south Kashmir built by Raja Ranadatiya.
- In front of his Royal palace he built Martandeshwari temple around 370 to 400 C.E.
- The same temple was later architectured by Lalitadatiya Muktapida and was dedicated to Surya Bhagwan.
- According to historians the temple was completely destroyed by Sikandar Butshikan in the early 15th century CE.
- The architects built this magnificent edifice in a unique way so that the sunlight would fall on the idol (idol of Sun God) throughout the day.
- The Archaeological Survey of India has declared the Martand Sun Temple as a site of national importance in Jammu and Kashmir.
Some of the important Sun temples in India-
- Sun Temple at Unao in Madhya Pradesh.
- Sun Temple in Ranchi, Jharkhand.
- Katarmal Surya Temple, Almora District, Uttarakhand.
- Surya Pahar Temple, Assam.
- Surya Narayana Temple, Domlu, Bangalore.
- Dakshinaarka Sun Temple, Gaya.
- Suryanar Temple also called as Suryanar Kovil Temple, Kumbakonam.
- Surya Narayana Temple, Arasavalli, Andhra Pradesh.
- Lalitaditya alias Muktapida was a powerful ruler of the Karkota dynasty of Kashmir region in the Indian subcontinent.
- He is mentioned in the Chinese Tang Dynasty Chronicles.
- According to 12th-century chronicler Kalhana, the Karkota dynasty of Kashmir was founded in 625 CE by king Durlabh Vardhana.
- The Karkota rulers were Vaishnavas and constructed several Vishnu shrines in their dominions.
- Avanti Varman ascended the throne of Kashmir in 855 A.D., establishing the Utpala dynasty and ending the rule of the Karkota dynasty.