Sunday, November 1, 2009



(  Above ..latest Photos )

PANDRETHAN temple situated about 100 yards from river vitasta ( Jhelum) bank on main highway. The temple is Now Called PAANI Mandir by people living in Sonawar and Indra Nagar localities .It is about 5 kms from srinagar city and just two kms from Sonawar .

Pandrethan has been the capital of king Praversena I. King Ashoka beautified this city and constructed various buildings and Viharas in Pandrethan. According to Cunnigham,This particular temple was built by King Partha in 921 AD .

It was also known as  Meruvardhanaswami temple in past as it was  built by Meru a Minister of King Partha . .As per Rajatangini , Pandrethan was  founded by king Pravarsena in the 6th century AD and known as Puranadishthana or 'old town'.  Its interior has one of the finest surviving temple ceilings in Kashmir, consisting of three intersecting squares formed by diagonally placed lintels, the soffit decorated with a lotus. In keeping with the tradition of a water tank attached to the shrine, this temple is built on a plinth built in the middle of a tank. This temple is  dedicated to Shiva. The architecture of this temple is in keeping with the age-old Kashmiri tradition of wooden buildings. Due to the snowy conditions in Kashmir, the roof is peaked and slants slowly outward. The temple is moderately ornamented, moving away from the post-Gupta aesthetics of heavy carving. A row of elephants at the base and a decorated doorway are the only embellishments on the shrine.

A Devastating fire destroyed  the entire Pandrethan village  in 960 AD but this temple survived the fire .The temple is a classical example of Kashmiri temple architecture .

                                                          ( Old Photo 1868 AD )
The doomed roof of this temple is a fine piece of architecture .A series of arches beautify the retaining wall. Surrounded by lofty Chinars ,the temple is presently  laid out in a water pond .


( Avtar Mota )