Bhubaneswar: Odisha is a storehouse of stories and temples waiting to be explored. One among those many temples, is a shrine almost in ruins, around 25 km from Cuttack. Surrounded by a lush green park in Ganeswarpur village is the thousands of year old Pancha Pandava temple.
It is believed that Pandavas stayed at this place for a few days during their secret exile.
While younger Pandava brothers, Arjuna, Bhima, Nakula, and Sahadeva, resided here under the Jalauka hills, the eldest brother Yudhisthira lived in the nearby Rudrapur village with mother Kunti. The Pandavas used to worship Lord Vishnu during their secret stay here.
In the memory of Pancha Pandavas’ stay here, the ruler of Somavamsi dynasty had built this magnificent temple with amazing stone carvings in the 10th century. The temple of the presiding deity, Lord Krishna (with consorts Rukmini and Satyabhama), was at the centre of the complex, surrounded by four other small temples dedicated to the Pandavas.
People say that this was one of the most-visited temples in the medieval period.
Somewhere in the 16th century, more than 80% of the main temple, including the deity’s idol, was destroyed by Muslim invader Kalapahada. Only three temples and the damaged idol of Lord Krishna are all that remains here.
The temple is located 4 km away from famous Chhatia Bata temple in Jajpur and perfect for people who love solitude.