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Lakhamandal

An Archaeological Survey of India protected Shivatemple 60 km from Mussoorie on the Yamunotri highway is an interesting subject for the archaeologists and anthropologists. This 5000 year old site is believed to have been built by the Pandavas of the epic Mahabharat which was later rebuilt by princess Ishwaraof Singhpura near Jullundhar. The temple site is a treasure chest of ancient statutes and articles. Believers also link this place with the Lakhshagrihaconspiracy of the epic Mahabharata where the Kaurava prince Duryodhana built a palace of shellac for the Pandavas only to burn them, hence the name after shellac which is called ‘Lakh’ in Hindi. Another belief suggests the name as ‘One Lakh’ when the Pandavas had to build one lakh Shivlinga to get out of the curse of Guru-hatya and Brahma-hatya [killing of teacher and Brahmin] during the war of Mahabharata. Landslides and agricultural diggings still reveal unearthing of Shivalinga. The sanctum houses the stone idols of Surya, Shiva, Parvati, Kartikey, Ganesha, Vishnu Hanuman and footmark of Parvati as a child. The live-size statue of Jai and Vijay, lord Vishnu’s doormen, stand at the backside of the temple opposite to temple. The statue are also believed to be of Danav and Manav where dead-body of humans regained life for a brief time, perhaps such stories linked Jaunsaar region in the recent past with black magic and supernatural powers. The mysterious caves around the temple vicinity are also subject of curiosity.