Nestled in the lap of nature,the 550-year-old Mata Jayanti Devi Temple,situated on the banks of the Jayanti river and surrounded by Shivalik Hills in Jayanti Majri village,is a picturesque site.
Thats perhaps the reason why it has inspired so many shutterbugs and artists. With the village as a backdrop and the 100-odd stairs leading to it,the red flags salute the temple in harmony, says artist Bheem Malhotra to describe the place that has been captured in his paintings and has now become a part of the governments Heritage Walk.
Also awe-inspiring is the large water tank that ne comes across on the way up. The huge gate at the base of the hillock too,has fascinated everyone, Malhotra says,adding that the view from the temple the highest point of the hillock,supported by massive pillars is spectacular.
While hues of green mark your way to the temple,the undulating topography and hump-like hillocks give the place a mysterious feel and the only sounds that you get to hear are the rustling of leaves,the humming of bees and the occasional tinkling of a temple bell.
The temple has a natural aura about it and is built in the Shikhara style that is prevalent in whole of North India, says Professor Rajneesh Wattas,former principal of the Chandigarh College of Architecture. He talks of the idols of Shiva,Ganesha,Laxmi and local deities Lokda Dev and Balasundari,seen here in folk forms.
Said to be built in the medieval period,the temple has a rich cultural history and is only 13 km away from the Chandigarh Bus Stand, chips in V N Singh,Consultant (Museums and Art Galleries) STEPS and Nodal Officer,Le Corbusier Centre. He tells us that the actual ancient temple of Jayanti Devi is situated in the Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh but the pindi of the Devi was brought here from that temple.
Jayanti Devi is an incarnation of Mother Goddess and is one of the seven goddesses of the Kangra valley Naina Devi,Jwalaji,Chintpurni,Mansa Devi,Brajeshwari,Chamunda Devi and Jayanti Devi, Singh signs off.