Markandeshwar,Lord Shiva Temple- Maharashtra
Shiv Temple Situated 40 km from Gadchiroli city is the ancient temple of Markandeshwar at Markanda in gadchiroli District of Maharashtra State, India. The village is situated on the bank of Vainganga River. The temple is believed to be extremely holy and though not a well known sight, flocked to by locals and tourists from within the state who believe in the power of the deity residing in the temple.
The outside of the temple is architecturally different from the other temples as it belongs to a different ear. But the intricate carvings have been preserved to day. Some of the carvings include sexual imagery which some say is the work of demons as the temple is said to have been mysteriously constructed within one night.
This temple was supposed to be built by the Danvas (Evil forces) in one night. The temple is made of stone and the structure type is called as Hemadpanth. The Markanda temple is contructed on the bank of Vainganga in the east side in 196 x 168 Sqft. area. Earlier, there were 24 temples. At present, there are only 18 temples existing, out of them only 4 temples are in good condition. The main temple of Markanda was distracted by striking of Lightening 300 years before. Therefore, no one could tell how the main temple formerly was.
Surrounding of the fortifications of the group temples there is temple of Dashavtar. There are 12 Pithas, there are shown extra 2 Pithas here. One of the experts of culture opinioned that these extra 2 Pithas influences the minds of the people more during this period and so more of the 2 Pithas might have been constructed. There are 12 Shivlingas in the temple and courtyard of the temple. Would this thread worn Shivlinga be called a Jyotirlinga ? Various Arts and Sculptures found in the Markanda Temple are worth a look.