Dantewara

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Author:Laxman Burdak, IFS (R)

Map of Dantewara district

Dantewara or Dantewada (दंतेवाडा) is a town and district in the state of Chhattisgarh.

Origin

Danteshwari Temple

The town is named after the goddess Danteshwari, the presiding deity of the Danteshwari Temple.

Location

It is located in the town, 80 km from the Jagdalpur tehsil. Dantewara district is divided into 7 tehsils, Dantewada, Gidam, Kuwakonda, Katekalyan, Chhindgarh, Sukma, and Konta.

Variants

History

दंतेवर

विजयेन्द्र कुमार माथुर[1] ने लेख किया है ... दंतेवर = दंतेश्वर = दंतेवाडा (जिला बस्तर, छत्तीसगढ़) (AS, p.422) में दंतेश्वरमाई नामक एक प्राचीन, रहस्यपूर्ण मंदिर आदिवासियों के इस सुनसान प्रदेश में स्थित है.

दंतेवाडा परिचय

दन्तेश्वरी मन्दिर छत्तीसगढ़ के दन्तेवाड़ा में स्थित एक शक्तिपीठ है जो दन्तेश्वरी देवी को समर्पित है। इस मन्दिर का निर्माण 14वीं शताब्दी में हुआ था। दन्तेवाड़ा का नाम देवी दन्तेश्वरी के नाम पर ही पड़ा है जो काकतीय राजाओं की कुलदेवी हैं। परम्परागत रूप से देवी दन्तेश्वरी बस्तर राज्य की भी कुलदेवी हैं।[2]

दंतेवाड़ा, जगदलपुर के दक्षिण-पश्चिम में स्थित, पवित्र नदियों शंखिनी और धनकिनी के संगम पर, दोनों नदियों के अलग-अलग रंग हैं, यह छह सौ साल पुराना मंदिर प्राचीन में से एक है भारत के विरासत स्थल और बस्तर क्षेत्र के धार्मिक-सामाजिक-सांस्कृतिक इतिहास का प्रतिनिधित्व करते हैं। इस मंदिर के बारे में भारत के बहुत कम लोगों को पता है। विशाल मंदिर परिसर आज वास्तव में सदियों से इतिहास और परंपरा का एक खड़ा स्मारक है। अपनी समृद्ध वास्तुकला और मूर्तिकला धन और अपनी जीवंत त्योहार परंपराओं के साथ, दंतेश्वरी माई मंदिर इस क्षेत्र के लोगों के लिए सबसे महत्वपूर्ण आध्यात्मिक केंद्र के रूप में कार्य करता है।

Tahsils in Dantewara district

Villages in Dantewada tahsil

Acheli, Adpal, Alnar, Alnar, Anwarabhata, Aranpur, Arbe, Atepal, Bade Bacheli (NP), Bade Bedma, Bade Hadmamunda, Badegadam, Badegodre, Badegudra, Badekameli, Badekarka, Badelekhapal, Badepaneda, Badesurokhi, Badetumnar, Bainpal, Balegapal, Balood, Balpet, Bangapal, Barrem, Barsur, Basanpur, Behnar, Bengloor, Bengpal, Bhairamband, Bhalunala, Bhansi, Bhatpal, Bhogam, Bhusaras, Binjam, Bodepali, Budhpadar, Burdikarka, Burgum, Chandenar, Cherpal, Chhindnar, Chhote Bedma, Chhote Gadam, Chhote Karka, Chhote Lakhapal, Chhotegodre, Chhotegudra, Chhotehadma Munda, Chhotetumar, Chikpal, Chitalanka, Chitaloor, Cholnar, Dabpal, Dantewada (NP), Degalras, Dhanikarka, Dhotpal, Dhurli, Dodpal, Doriras, Dudhiras, Dugeli, Dumam, Duwalikarka, Farasmadur, Faraspal, Faraspalbodali, Fulnar, Fulpad, Fundari, Gadapal, Gadhniri, Gamawada, Ganjenar, Gatam, Geedam (CT), Gondpal, Gongpal, Gudase, Gumalnar, Gumda, Gumiyapal, Gutoli, Halbaras, Handawada, Haram, Harla, Haurnar, Hidpal, Hikul, Hiranar, Hiroli, Hiroli, Hitameta, Hitawada, Hitawar, Jabeli, Jangampal, Japodi, Jaram, Jaunga, Jhirka, Jhodiyawadam, Jinhakodta, Jodatarai, Kadampal, Kakadi, Kalepal, Kamaloor, Kandakarka, Karli, Karnjener, Kasoli, Katekalyan, Katiyarras, Katulnar, Kaurgaon, Kawadgaon, Kawalnar, Keshapur, Khutepal, Kidariras, Kirandul (M), Kodaripal, Kodenar, Kodokal, Koriras, Korkorti, Korlapal, Kuhchepal, Kumharras, Kundeli, Kundenar, Kuper, Kutrem, Kutulnar, Kuwakonda, Lakharas, Lawa, Lendra, Madadi, Madakmaras, Madase, Madenda, Madhpal, Mahrahaurnar, Mahrakarka, Mailawada, Mangnar, Marjum, Masenar, Masodi, Matenar, Mathadi, Mendoli, Mendpal, Metapal, Midkulnar, Mofalnar, Mokhpal, Molasnar, Muchnar, Muhander, Muler, Munaga, Murki, Muskel, Mustalnar, Nadenar, Nadiyapadar, Nagphani, Nagul, Nahadi, Nakulnar, Nayanar, Nelgoda, Nerli, Netapur, Neurnar, Nilawaya, Norli, Padhapur, Padmeta, Pahurnar, Palnar, Pandewar, Paralnar, Parcheli, Patarras, Pedka, Penta, Perpa, Pinabacheli, Pindkapal, Pirnar, Pondum, Porokameli, Potali, Pratapgiri, Pujaripal, Purangel, Purantarai, Purantarai, Reka, Renganar, Rewali, Ronje, Salnar, Samalwar, Sameli, Samgiri, Samlur, Siyanar, Surnar, Tahakwada, Taneli, Tarlapal, Teknar, Telam, Tetam, Tikanpal, Tongpal, Toylanka, Toynar, Tudparas, Tumakpal, Tumirguada, Udela, Udenar, Upet,

Danteshwari Temple

The goddess Danteshwari is worshipped as an incarnation of Shakti and the temple is held to be one of the fifty-two sacred Shakti Peethas.

Situated in Dantewada, south-west of Jagdalpur, at the confluence of the holy rivers Shankini & Dhankini, this six hundred year old temple is one of the ancient heritage sites of India and is a representation of the religio-socio-cultural history of the Bastar region. Little is known about this shrine to much of India. The vast temple complex today is truly a standing monument to centuries of history and tradition. With its rich architectural and sculptural wealth and its vibrant festival traditions, Danteshwari Mai temple serves as the most important spiritual center for the people of this region.

It is believed that a tooth of Sati had fallen here and Danteshwari Shakti Pith was established. According to the ancient legend, Goddess Sati committed self-immolation in the fire pit of yagna kund, due to an insult committed by her father Daksha towards her consort Lord Shiva during the Yaga. Raged by the death of Sati, Lord Shiva destroyed the Yaga of Daksha and with the body of Sati in his hands started to do 'Taandav'. Lord Vishnu cut the dead body of Goddess Sati with his Sudarshan to free Lord Shiva from the grief caused by her death. Parts of the dead body of Goddess Sati were scattered to fifty-two different places, which were consecrated as Shakti Pithas.

Architecture: The Danteshwari temple was built in the 14th Century by the Chalukya kings in South Indian style of temple architecture. The idol of Danteshwari Mai is chiseled out of black stone. The temple is divided into four parts such as Garbh Griha, Maha Mandap, Mukhya Mandap and Sabha Mandap. Garbha Griha and Maha Mandap were constructed with stone pieces. There is a Garud Pillar in front of the entrance of the temple. The temple itself is located in a spacious courtyard surrounded by massive walls. The shikhara is adorned with sculptural finery.

Dantewara contains the shrine of Danteshvari, tutelary goddees of the- then ruling family. The temple is built at the junction of two Rivers called Sankhini and Dankini, and is notorious as a place where human sacrifices were formerly annually offered. At least a place was pointed out to me in the innermost; sanctum, close to the goddess, where they said the victims used to be decapitated. The goddess has eight arms and is represented in the act of killing the buffalo demon. She is in reality Mahishasuramardvni, locally known as Dantesvari. There are various other images such as those of Vishnu, Kartikeya, Ganesha, etc., some of which were brought away from the ruins of Barsur. There are five inscriptions here, three inside the Dantesvari temple, one just outside it, and another near a mud hut called Bhairamgudi. There are remains of several other temples buried in, ruins. For the support of the Dantesvari temple, an estate consisting of several villages is attached.

Bhairamgarh is about 70 miles west of Jagdalpur and has three or four temples, together with remains of a fort and a ditch and several tanks. There is an inscription on a pillar, and at Potinar, a village near Bhairamgarh, there is a slab1 inscribed on four sides. Gadia is 20 miles west of Jagdalpur and has a stone temple with no idol, but built in the same style as those of Barsur.

About 400 yards away there is a big inscription, arid a linga was found buried in a brick mound. Narayanpal and Kuruspal are quite close to each other, the former being situated on the river Indravati. Near these villages are the forts of Rajapur and Bodra, and not far away the beautiful falls of the Indrvati at Chitrakut present a magnificent appearance.

Narayanpal is only 6 milea from Gadia and has an old temple, an image of Vishnu, and an inscription. Sunarpal and Chapka are -within 12 miles from Narayanpal. Chapka has a number of sati pillars, several of which are inscribed.

Tirathgarh also contains some temples and relics. Dongar is a place where according to custom the present Rajas go to be crowned. Here one of the queens, whose finger was chopped of by royal order and who ventured to inform her father, writing the letter with the blood BO wantonly spilt, was buried alive. The pit, which is still pointed out, was once disturbed by a greedy Raja of the same family , who also brought down the temple of Narayanpal and some others in search of supposed buried treasure.

Inscriptions in Bastar

I now proceed to give a short notice of each inscription of which I possess impressions, with very brief remarks where necessary, reserving a fuller account for other papers. The Bastar inscriptions may be roughly divided into three classes, viz., those of the (1) Nagavanshi kings, (2) the Kakatiyas, and (3) miscellaneous. Of 22 yet discovered, ten belong to the 1st class, five to the 2nd, and the rest to the 3rd.

Source - http://www.archive.org/stream/epigraphiaindica014770mbp/epigraphiaindica014770mbp_djvu.txt

I. Narayanpal Stone inscription of Queen Gunda-mahadevi, the mother of Somesvaradeva (Nagavanshi) 1111 AD

Narayanpal is a village 23 miles west of Jagdalpur. The inscription is on a stone slab and is in Nagari characters, and the language is Sanskrit. It records the grant of the village Narayanapura to the god Narayana and some land near the Khajjuri tank to the god Lokesvara, and it is dated in the Saka year 1033 on Wednesday, the full moon-day of the Karttika month in the Khara samvatsara (Saka-nripa-kalatite dasa-sata.traya[s*]-trims-adhike Khara-samvatsare Kartika-paurnimasyam Budhavare) corresponding to 18th October 1111 A. D., and issued by Gunda महादेवी (गुंड महादेवी), the chief queen of Maharjaa Dharavarsha, the mother of Somesvaradeva and the grand mother of Kanharadeva, who was then ruling on the death of his father (Maharaja-Somesvara-devasya swar (swr)gate tesham putrasya, asam, naptuh . . . Srimad-vira-Kanharadevasya kalyana-vyaya-raiya). The dynasty claims to belong to the Nagavansha and the Kasyapa gotra, to have a tiger with a calf as their crest and to be the lords of Bhogavati the best of the cities (Nagavamsodbhava, Bhogavati-pura-var-esvara savatsa-vyaghra Lamchhana Kas(s)yapa,-gotra). At the end of the inscription the sun and moon, a cow and a calf, and a,


1. This has now been removed to a roadside place called Jangla, six miles north of Potinar, for easy access.


162 EPIGBAPHIA INDICA. VOL. IX.


dagger and shield with a linga in its socket, exactly of the shape in which the Lingayats wear them, are engraved. There is a postscript to this inscription in which it is stated that the land was given by Dharana-mahadevi, who was probably the widow of Somesvara, as will appear further on. There can be no doubt that Narayanpal is the Narayanapura of the inscription. A temple of Narayana is still standing there. The image of Vishnu, about 2' high, canopied by a hooded snake, is exquisitely executed.

Dantewara Dantesvari gudi inscription of Narasimhadeva Saka year 1140

Source – Epigraphia Indica Vol. IX (1907-08): A S I, Edited by E. Hultzsoh, Ph.D. & Sten Konow, Ph.D., p.163

This is another stone inscription in Telugu character found in the temple of the goddess Dantesvari at Dantewara. It is dated in the dark fortnight of the month Jyeshtha in the Saka year 1140 (expired). In this year there was an eclipse of the sun, and the month of Jyeshtha was intercalary. At that tune Maharaja Narasimhadeva, the ornament of the race, of the best of serpents, Was ruling (Sri-bhujaga-vara-bhushana-Maharajul=aina. Sriman-Nara-sinhadeva-Maharajula rajyamu). The inscription is only a fragment.

Dantewara Pillar Inscription Saka year 1147 (1224 A.D.)

(In situ)

Source - Epigraphia Indica Vol. X (1909-10): A S I, Edited by Sten Konow, Ph.D.,p.40

Dantewara is 46 miles from Jagdalpur. There is a pillar here inscribed in Telugu characters, but a large portion of it has broken off. It apparently records a gift which was made on the 10th day of the dark fortnight of Jyeshtha in the Saka year 1147 (corresponding to to 13th June 1224 A.D.), during the reign of Jagdekabhūshaṇa Maharaja Narasimhadeva. This again does not mention the dynasty to which the king belonged, but at present there is nothing to show that he was other than a Nagavanshi king.

Sten Konow, Ph.D. writes that When I visited the shrine of Danteshvari at Dantewara in the Bastar State in 1897, I saw a smail stone pillar covered with Telugu writing (on all sides, viz. the four faces and the top) fixed at the place where goats were sacrificed. It was then being used as a yvpa (sacrificial post) and the priests of the temple did not know what was written on it. My friend Rai Bahadur Baijnath sent me impressions from which the text was deciphered and a brief notice appeared in Vol. IX . (p. 163) of this Journal. Fresh impressions were subsequently taken by Mr. Venlcoba Rao, and I am indebted to Rai Bahadur V. Veukayya for kindly revising the test after comparing it with the fresh impressions. The slab on which it is inscribed is 2' 6 high, the breadth of each of the 4 faces being abont 7-1/2" and the top is consequently 7-1/2 " square. As stated above, the whole was covered with writing, but a portion has peeled off carrying away the final portions of almost all the lines of the third face and the beginnings of those of the fourth. Almost everything of the record on these 2 faces is lost. The engraving on the top is also much damaged and in the impressions almost the whole of it is illegible. It appears that there were altogether 43 lines on the 4 faces, and the top which appears to contain the end had 7 lines, making a total of 50. On the top of the first face, there are figures of the sun and the moon. Dantewara being south of the Indravati which, as I have said elsewhere, formed the boundary between the Nagari and Telugu scripts, this record is in Telugu characters. The language is Telugu. The object of the inscription, was apparently to record a gift, which was made on the 10th day of the dark fortnight of Jyeshtha in the Saka year 1147, during the reign of Jagadekabhushana-Mahārāja-Narasimhadeva. The date corresponds to 13th June 1224 A.D. as calculated by Mr. Gokul Prasad, Tahsildar of Dhamtri. It is not clear whether the grant was made by the king himself or by some one of his subjects, but the phrase srimān=Narasimhadeva-Maharajula-rajya etc. (LL. 6 to 11), " the reign of the illustrious Maharaja Narasimhadeva" seems to show that it was some person other than the Maharaja who made a reference in this wise.

Jat clans

We find following Jat clans related with the original word danta (दंत):

  • Dantoriya (दंतोरिया) and Dantusariya (दंतुसरिया) is Gotra of Jats found in Ratlam district in Madhya Pradesh. Mundari is a notable village of this gotra.
  • Dantarwal (दंतरवाल) - distribution yet not known

There is a need to find connections of Dantewara/Danteshwari and the above Jat clans who have Nagavanshi origins.

References

  1. Aitihasik Sthanavali by Vijayendra Kumar Mathur, p.422
  2. “Bastar”। ब्रिटैनिका विश्वकोष (11th) 3। (1911)। कैम्ब्रिज यूनिवर्सिटी प्रेस।

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