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Raniwas Temple Bara

Raniwas Temple, which falls within the premises of Raniwas Palace, is located 1 kilometre away from the north of Simraungadh market and 2km away from the north of the Indian border. The meaning behind the Raniwas is Queen’s Residence, where ‘Rani’ means ‘Queen’ and ‘Was’ means ‘Residence’. Famous as the historical monument and religious site in Bara district, this temple is also given name as the ‘Ram Mandir’, ‘Ram Janaki Mandir’, ‘Mahal Sarai’ etc. It covers a total of 600 bighas including the palace.

History

The structure and the style of this temple and palace is based on an ancient complex of Karnat Dynasty. As soon as the Karnat Dynasty fell, the Oiniwar Dynasty raised their power and ruled the Mithila region by possessing the power from 1353 to 1527 AD.

So, at the ruling time of this dynasty, Raniwas palace was built by Maharaja Shiva Singh in the name of his beloved daughter Ishwori Singh.At that time Karnat architecture was famous, because of which the king adopted the same style and built the huge building. Now, the premises of the same building are successfully attracting many domestic and international tourists.

Even though the Raniwas palace was built at first, later it was converted into Raniwas Temple. According to the mythology, then Prime Minister Junga Bahadur Rana was returning from the hunting camp located in Simraungadh. On the way, before reaching the palace, he went through some critical issues and died near the Patharghat, Rautahat in 1877 AD. So, his queen Hiranyagarbha Devi asked for the wish before going to Sati, which was to build the Raniwas Temple. Therefore, with the intention of fulfilling the last wish of the queen, her son i.e., Jagat Jung Rana built this temple in 1878 AD.

Interior of the Raniwas Temple

Inside the main temple, you can see the idols of three Gods i.e., Ram, Sita, and Laxman. All these Gods are worshipped by Hindus with great devotion. These three idols are placed in a straight line. Below these idols, you can see the statues of Jung Bahadur Rana, his wife, and son, Jagat Jung Rana, bowing at their feet with folded hands.

Likewise, you can also find the two huge metallic bells (Ghanta) which were placed by Jagat Jung Rana at the time of construction of this temple. The bell consists of the inscription of the date 1876 AD. Outside of the main temple, there is a giant statue of Hanuman, who is worshipped along with Lord Ram.

Premises of Raniwas Temple

Bounded by thick grasslands, trees and vegetation, the surrounding of this temple is worth observing. The small alley leads to an open area in front of the temple, which is filled with twisted Kabhro Tree and Mango Orchard plant. After taking a few steps from here, you will reach the entrance point of the building having two floors, which is constructed by using tin roofed brick structure. This two-storied structure surrounds the premises of the temple where priests and pilgrims live. The design and pattern of this building is very similar to the Kankali temple, which is painted vibrantly and lies on a high platform.

Besides these, there are also some of the historical remaining like stone in the corner of the yard. They are placed in a messy situation, which makes the temple look terrible. Likewise, the two-storied used for the living of priests and pilgrims is also in bad condition because of the falling walls and bricks.

Crowds of Devotees

Even though there is regular visit of devotees from different parts of Nepal and India, the high crowds can be observed mainly during Ram Navami in Raniwas temple. To worship Lord Ram, many people flock to this temple. Locals organize the event and fair during this festival. It is believed that wishes of the individual will be fulfilled, even if they step into this holy land during Lord Ram’s birthday.

Historical Ponds

During the establishment of this temple, there were a lot of lotus ponds. Similarly, there were also around 208 wells. All the ponds were in the western edge of the temple. But, in the present context, you can only get a glimpse of a few pounds because most ponds from olden days have either been buried or dried up.

Getting There

Travellers can easily get to Kankali temple to explore the historical sites of Nepal. The total distance between Kathmandu and Simrangaudh is 162km. To get there from Kathmandu, you have the option of both flights and overland transportation.

Numerous flights run daily from Tribhuvan International Airport to Simara Airport. From Simara, you can drive all the way to Simraungadh either in public or private vehicles. The distance between these two places is 45km, which takes around 1-2 hours. It will be easier if you travel by private transportation as it provides a comfortable journey and saves time, too. As an alternative option, you can also drive all the way from Kathmandu to Simraungadh; however, it takes more time.

Bara district is well-developed, so you don’t have to worry about accommodation, communication, transportation and health facilities.

Therefore, Raniwas Temple in Bara carries a huge historical value to the whole Nepalese. It is the identity of our ancient rich history, culture, monuments, and traditions. It is our responsibility to preserve and promote this temple for the development of both local and nation.

-Article written by: Kusum Kharel for Land Nepal

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