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Vikash Sharma

Jajpur: Dasarathpur village of Jajpur district witnessed a footfall of thousands of people after the remains of a Shiva shrine were found in the Baitarani river here on Tuesday. The remains of the temple and an ancient lingam were reportedly found near the Siddheshwar Temple in the locality.

As per reports, the top portion of the temple ruins was first visible partially on the occasion of Maha Shivaratri which was observed on March 11. Meanwhile, considering it to be some divine intervention, the locals, as well as people from nearby villages, have started thronging the place to offer prayers.

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The villagers say that a huge white Shivling and two temples resurfaced during the lifting of sand from the middle course of the river. Apart from conducting daily rituals, the locals conducted ‘Abhisekh’, a special puja of the lingam as per tradition.

Prakash Kumar Dixit, a priest of the Siddheswar temple said that “The temple was first visible on Maha Shivaratri and it has now become a center of religious activities. We had conducted Abhisekh and other rituals as well.”

According to Dixit, already the local BDO, Tehsildar, and other senior officials had visited the spot after the latest find here.

The locals are now demanding a detailed investigation of the temple remains by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). “We believe it to be an ancient temple. We urge the district collector and the State government for proper excavation at the site,” said Rudraprasanna Bal.

Researcher Harihar Routray said, “Siddheswar temple is an ancient temple and the relic inside it has drawn the attention of researchers from different parts of the country and abroad in the past. The temple architecture and other idols are old and the remains found in the river is very encouraging and assumes historical importance.”

(Edited By Pradeep Singh)

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