With three Shiva temples on three sides of the mountain and forest all around, the Trikuta Dham at Badamba in Cuttack is a site of great religious significance where Ramnath, Baidyanath and Singhanath Mahadev's temples have been worshiped for ages.
The legend behind these three temples on the banks of the Mahanadi River is as old as it is exciting. It is believed that these three temples were established by Shri Ram, Devi Sita and Laxman. Lord Ram had gone through this route during his exile (Vanvas). And when Devi Sita felt thirsty, he built a kund (tank) for Sita. That kund is still said to be there.
As per the local folklore, Lord Ram had installed a Shivalinga atop the Trikuta hill. It is called 'Ramnath'. The Shivalinga established by Devi Sita at the foot of the hill is called 'Baideshwar'. And the Singhanatha shivalinga, seated at a distance on an island, was established by Laxman.
“These are ancient temples. One cannot find any temple like this anywhere in Odisha. These temples belong to Tretaya yug. Lord Ram had made these three temples as a triangle on the Trikuta hill,” said the temple priest Pabitra Rana.
“We will not find anything like this anywhere else. It is believed that by availing darshan of Lord Shiva in this Trikuta Dham, one can get all their wishes fulfilled,” said a devotee, Sweety Jena.
Coming out of the Ramayana and looking from a historical point of view, these three temples have a lot of historical importance too. Built in the 9th century, the temples are full of exquisite art. Though not so big in height as some other temples in Odisha, these shrines have so much intricate work done on their walls. Nobody can take their eyes off them after looking just once.
Along with the magnificent artwork at the entrance of the temple, the Ashtagraha idols instead of the usual Navagraha, attract devotees more. But despite having so much artwork, it remains unnoticed due to alleged government apathy.
It is pertinent to mention here that, like Trikuta Dham, great civilisations have been raised wherever Lord Ram had set his foot on during his exile.