Envis Centre, Ministry of Environment & Forest, Govt. of India

Printed Date: Friday, July 1, 2022

Shamlaji

 

 

 

  

 

 

Shamlaji, is a major Hindu pilgrimage centre in Aravalli district of Gujarat state of India. The Shamlaji temple is dedicated to Vishnu or Krishna. Several other Hindu temples are located nearby.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

The present temple dedicated to Shamlaji, a form of Vishnu or a name of Krishna, is built probably in 11th century in Solanki style and renovated at least 500 years ago. The temple was claimed by Jains in the past. The temple is located on the banks of the Meshvo River in the valley surrounded by well wooded hills. It is also referred to as Dholi Dhajawala due to white silk flag fluttering on top of the temple. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From the two inscriptions found, name of the deity seems to be Gadadharji, the holder of the club, a well known title of Vishnu, Krishna, or Shamlaji. The cow idols are also worshiped depicting childhood of Krishna as cowherd. It is one of the 154 important pilgrimage sites of Vaishnavism.

 

 

There are other temples located near shamlaji temple viz., somanarayan temple, Kashi Vishwanath Mahadev temple which is seven feet below ground level and its pyramidal roof rise to the level of the land round it. In a small shrine between the Shamlaji temple and the river, late-Gupta period idol of standing Ganesha is worshiped. Trilokeshwar is a small temple opposite the Shamlaji temple dedicated to Shiva having idol with trident. On the opposite bank of the river, there is a temple dedicated to Ranchhodji, another form of Krishna.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The temple at Harishchandra ni chori probably dates to the 10th century A.D. It has a rectangular sanctum with a large pavilion in front. The whole structure is enclosed within the courtyard. The walls of this courtyard have fallen down but the ornamental gateway (torana) still stands.

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Devni Mori, 2 km from Shamlaji, has remains of a Buddhist monastery dated to 3rd-4th century. The inscribed casket with body relics of Buddha was found from the Stupa excavated here. The tomb of Navgaja Pir, a maulvi, is revered by many tribals.

 

 

 

A large annual fair is held on Kartik Sud 15th (October). The tribal community reveres the Shamlaji as Kaliyo Dev or the Dark Divine. Large numbers of devotees visit the place and bathe in the river. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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