Javagal Lakshmi Narasimha Temple
If you are a history buff and love art, you wouldn’t have missed visiting Belur and Halebeedu when in Karnataka. Historians believe that there are more than 100 such beautiful temples built by Hoysalas around the southern part of Karnataka. If you have read our Basaralu temple post you would have already witnessed one of such beauty.
It was monsoon and one of our friends was just back from the Chikkamagaluru trip. He strongly recommends some beautiful interior places around Chikkamagaluru. We couldn’t resist the urge and instantly planned a weekend trip to Chikkamagaluru.
Starting early for the trip from a buzzing town like Bengaluru has its own benefits. You can quickly get away from the suffocating hustle. By the sunrise, you can be in a totally new place to explore.
Having a quick breakfast at Hotel Amrita Darshini, Tiptur, we headed towards Chikkamagaluru via Banavara. The exact reason for planning this route to reach Chikkamagaluru was the Lakshmi Narasimha Temple of Javagal.
Javagal is very much famous because of its association with the famous former fast bowler Javagal Srinath. Even though Srinath was brought up in Mysore, his family roots trace back to this sleepy village. Now a small village of Javagal was once famous for its commercial activities, during the reign of a Hoysala King named Vira Someshwara. Javagal is very close to towns like Hassana(45 km) and Halebeedu(12 km).
Sri Laxmi Narasimha temple of Javagal
You need to take a left diversion on NH73 as soon as you cross Javagal lake while approaching the town from Banavara. Proceed another 300 meters in the road and this beautiful temple greets you with the first sight of its ancient charm. As this temple is not visited by many tourists, parking the vehicle won’t be an issue, even though there is no dedicated parking slot.
Two ornated stone elephants welcome you to the Temple campus. These elephants remind us of the twin elephants at Banavasi temple. Entry to the temple is through a Mahadwara – a high compound wall, that was built later during the Vijayanagara era.
This 770 years old Lakshminarasimha temple at Javagal is an example of the mid-13th century Hoysala architecture. Hoysala Empire King Vira Someshwara built this temple in 1250 A.D.
It is a trikuta temple i.e., it has three shrines of the usual type built on an elevated platform. The central shrine houses Vishnu as Sridhara and the other two shrines have Venugopala and Lakshminarasimha.
On the outer side of the first prakara wall, one can find the carvings of the images of all the Caturvimsati Murtis (the 24 different aspects of Lord Narayan or Vishnu)
Most of the murtis have four arms holding weapons and ornaments like the Sankha, Chakra, Gada, and Padma in different positions and with different ornaments.
There are images of many Gods including God Harihara, God Brahma, Goddess Parvati engraved on the temple walls.
The major credit of the art you see in the temple goes to The famous sculptor Mallitamma. He has also contributed to the Keshava temple at Somanathapura and Lakshminarsimha temple at Nugenahalli
The base of the temple has 6 rectangular frames of equal width
- Starting from the top, the first layer consists of Hansa (birds)
- the second layer has makara (aquatic monsters) and other stories
- The third layer has stories of Hindu epic Ramayana, the Mahabharata, and stories of Krishna
- the fourth layer consists of leafy scrolls
- horses in the fifth
- and elephants in the sixth layer
First thing that comes to anyone’s mind after observing the temple is that more importance is given on minute ornamentation rather than on the massiveness in the Lakshminarasimha temple, Javagal. Like all Vaishnava temples, there is no depiction of Shiva anywhere on the shrine.
Head priest Mr. Narayana Swamy narrates the present sorry state of the temple. As this temple comes under the supervision of the Mujarayi department of state government, it hardly gets any grant for renovation and repairs. In most of the rainy season, water drips into the central sanction of the temple. Compared to the historical places maintained by ASI, lack of maintenance at Lakshmi Narasimha temple of Javagal is clearly visible. What is most heartbreaking is the fact that the ignorance of this precious temple by the villagers and tourists. Travelers visiting Belur and Halebeedu hardly know about this hidden gem. We strongly recommend everyone to give a visit to this calm and peaceful place whenever you get a chance.
In case if the temple is closed when you visit, you can contact the head priest, Mr Narayana Swamy on his mobile number: 9448894575
About Hoysala Dynasty
The Hoysala Empire was a Kannadiga dynasty that ruled most of the current Karnataka state, between the 10th and the 14th centuries. The capital of the Hoysalas was initially located at Belur but was later moved to Halebidu.
Since you have scrolled till the end of this post we are sure you won’t miss this informative video on this temple.
We took below route to reach Javagal from Bengaluru:
Bengaluru > Tumkur > Tiptur > Banavara > Javagal : 215 Kms
Toll Paid: 90 Rs