Sahastra Bahu Temple in Udaipur
Though there are many temples in the town, however the Sas-Bahu temple attracts many tourists to Udaipur. This temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is made of two structures. The larger temple is said to be made by a mother-in-law and the smaller one by the daughter-in-law. Another legend goes by that this temple was dedicated to Lord Vishnu who is called as Sahastra Bahu which means “One with thousand arms”. Though these temples are in partial ruins, but no one can deny the beauty of its splendor of the architecture.
The main entrance of the temple is made through a carved door with lintels as well as a multi-lobed arch in its middle. Both the temples are similar to each other and also come with a mandapa that comes with a porch and projections. As seen earlier, the temple of Sas is larger than the temple of Bahu. The temple of Bahu comes with an octagonal ceiling that is carved with eight intricate female figurines. The Sas temple comes with the archway that is found on its front.
On auspicious days, it is believed that the image of Lord Shri Vishnu swung from the torana along with hymns praising the Lord especially on ceremonial occasions. There is a common platform on which both the temples are built and the temples are east facing.
The temple is adorned with beautiful carvings that are based on “Ramayana”. However, the inner walls of the temple are plain and one cannot find enough carvings. It is also to be noted that the projection of the temple along with the exquisite sculptures makes this temple magnificent. The sculptures are made in two steps and in the first step the images of Lord Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva are carved and the second steps comes with the images of Rama, Parasurama and Balarama.
This temple was constructed during the reign of King Mahipala in the tenth century. However, today this temple is not functional and only admired for its exquisite architecture. Today, it comes under Archaeological Survey of India’s heritage monuments list.