Sun Temples in India

Recently, Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor participated in prayers at the Martand Sun temple. But Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) said that the event violated rules.

What prayers were conducted at the Martand Sun temple?

Navgrah Ashtamangalam pooja was held at the premises of Martand Sun temple.

For what events permission is required?

Rule 7(1) of the 1959 Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains (AMASR) act, states that meetings, receptions, parties, entertainment, or conferences cannot be held at a protected monument without permission in writing from the Union government.

Is permission required for religious events?

  • According to Rule 7(2) of the 1959 Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains (AMASR) act, permission is not required for any event held “in pursuance of a recognized religious usage or custom”.
  • If a site was a functional place of worship when it came under the jurisdiction of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), then it would continue to be a place of worship.

Is Martand Sun temple a functional place of worship?

According to Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) officials, Martand Sun Temple is not a functional place of worship, so permission had to be sought.

What are the functional places of worship under the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI)?

Some protected sites that were functioning places of worship when the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) took charge of them include Jamia Mosque, Srinagar, and the Fatehpur Sikri mosque.

Where is Martand Sun temple located?

The Martand Sun Temple is located in Anantnag in the Kashmir Valley of Jammu and Kashmir (union territory), India. This eighth-century temple is one of the oldest Sun temples in India and was dedicated to Surya, the chief solar deity in Hinduism. In Sanskrit, Surya is also known as Martand.

Who destroyed the Martand Sun temple and when?

The temple was destroyed by Sikandar Shah Miri between 1389 and 1413.

What is a Sun temple?

A sun temple is a building used for religious or spiritual activities dedicated to the sun or a solar deity.

What are the other famous sun temples in India?

  • Modhera Sun Temple, Gujarat, built during the rule of Bhima I of the Chaulukya Dynasty.
  • Konark Sun Temple, Odisha, was built in the 13th century CE. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Dakshinaarka Temple, Bihar. It is mentioned in the Hindu religious book Vaayu Purana.
  • Arasavalli Sun Temple, Andhra Pradesh, built in the 7th century CE by King Devendra Varma, a ruler of Kalinga.

Sun temples are found in which other countries?

Such temples were built by several different cultures and are distributed around the world. Apart from India, they are also found in China, Egypt, Japan, and Peru.



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