Shamlaji Temple, Gujarat

Usha Biswal Rout

08, Dec 2017 @ 08:34 PM
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Related to: Gujarat Travel Guide

About: Shamlaji no medo which is also spelled as Shamlaji is an important Hindu pilgrimage centre built in the 11th century, located in the Aravalli district of Gujarat state of India. The temple is purely dedicated to Vishnu or Krishna. The temple is located on the banks of the river Meshvo in the valley surrounded by Wooded hills where an image of standing Ganesha Idol in the late Gupta period and is still worshipped. There are proofs of ruined temples,  ancient brick work  and many scattered idols showing that Shamlaji has been a popular and important centre since the ancient times on the highway between Gujarat and Rajasthan. The remains of the shrines of different religions show that the whole area near or around Shamlaji was not only prosperous but also an important centre for civilization and culture also.

Shamlaji Temple, Gujarat
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Devni Mori, a place about two kilometers away from Shamlaji,  is having remains of Buddhist monastery from around 3rd– 4th century AD . The Stupa  which is considered as a Sharir Stupa has proved the presence of Buddha in Vadnagar. Unearthing the Stupa, was found a casket which contained the relics on Buddha.

Being a place of pilgrimage established at a picturesque spot, there are several other ancient shrines scattered all over this place. Amongst them is the small temple of Trilokeshwar just opposite to Shamlaji and has a beautiful Idol of Shiva with the trident. The Kashi – Vishwanath Mahadev is an ancient and simple temple, which is about seven feet below the ground level. The temple of Ranchhodji, is on the opposite bank.  There is also the tomb of Navgaja Pir, a maulvi(Muslim cleric) located closely which  is visited by many Adivasis.

Historical facts: According to one of the history stories,  an Adivasi found the Idol of Lord Shamlaji while ploughing his land. He worshipped it by lighting a lamp everyday and was blessed for his faith by having a abundant yield in his farm,  Learning on this, a Vaishnava merchant built the temple and installed the Idol therein,  which was later beautified by the Idar rulers.  More recently,  a prominent business family muster renovated the temple.

There is a Shamlaji mela which lasts for about three weeks  around in the month of November. Kartik Purnima ( Full moon night)  is the most important day for the fair. The tribal community reveres the Shamlaji as the Kaliyo Dev or the dark divine. A large number of devotees visit the place and bathe in the river.  Silver ornaments,  metal wares,  clothes and household stuff are sold during the fair.

The connectivity to Shamlaji is around 20 kms from Bhiloda and 29 kms from Modasa. Located off the highway 8, Shamlaji is frequented KY state transport buses from Himmatnagar and Ahemdabad.  Shamlaji road station is the nearest to station to the temple and two daily passenger trains are operated by Indian railway on meter gauge track.

Related Links: Hindu pilgrimage centre, Kashi-Vishwanath Mahadev, Shamlaji, Shamlaji mela, Temple of Trilokeshwar
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