Monday, December 31, 2012

New Year Greetings

Your continuous support and interest in my blog enthused me to show more of my Little World.

Looking forward to do more of it in the New Year.

Thanks to all and happy blogging.

Friends wish you all

New Year

One evening, my family at Tanirbavi beach in Mangalore having good time.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

St. Aloysius College, Mangalore

St. Aloysius College is located on the Light House Hill in Mangalore. The college campus is 37 acres wide. The campus also has St. Aloysius Chapel (we have already seen it here) which is more than 100 years old.

More than 100 years old college offers graduate and post-graduate diploma and Ph.D. programmes in a wide variety of subjects in the humanities, sciences, commerce, and management. 

The facilities in this college in terms of education and sports are too good. The teachers here are well respected and they do know how to take care of their pupil.

The campus has old as well as new buildings. I have captured here only old blocks. I am proud to say that I graduated from this finest institution. 

Monday, December 24, 2012

St. Andrew’s Church, Bangalore

St. Andrew’s Church is a massive orthodoxical structure located on the Cubbon Road, Bangalore. The construction of this grand structure was started in 1864 and completed within 2 years.

The church is based on Presbyterian Scottish architecture, with a tall belfry and chiming clock at the apex of its tower, bearing its name after the patron saint of Scotland, St. Andrew. 

This church red in color is visible from very far even through the tree cover surrounding it.

Wish you all Merry X'mas.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Sarpa Gumpha, Udaygiri

Sarpa Gumpha is located on Udayagiri hill in Orissa. This is of the period Mahameghavahana Chedi dynasty during 1st century B.C.

This is on detached boulder adjacent to west of the Hatigumpha. Here there are two tiny caves, the upper one, called Sarpa Gumpha I and the bellow one is Sarpa Gumpha II hewed out of sandstone natural rock.

The caves are devoid of any sculptural friezes. The facet of the upper cave is carved with a three hooded snake. On the lintel of the entrance there is evidence of Brahmi inscription. 

Monday, December 17, 2012

Poetry in Stone - 14

This is 14th in the series on the rich cultural heritage of ancient temples in India.  In Sanchi not only the 3rd century BC Stupas are interesting  but the beautifully carved gateways (tornas) are one of the most elegant structures. There are 4 such carved gateways in 4 cardinal directions, depicting life scenes of Buddha and Jataka stories around the Great Stupa.

The Western Gate has been elegantly carved.This beautiful view of Western Gate can be experienced from the elevated circumlocutory platform as one looks outward from the Stupa. There are 3 different architraves depicting various scenes on Lord Buddha.

From top to bottom they represent: 
  • A royal procession brings the relics of Buddha to the city of Kushinagara under the control of Mall Kings. 
  • Following the Buddha's death, as various claimants wanted portion of the remains and they prepare to attack Malla city as they were not ready to share it. Fortunately, the conflict was resolved without bloodshed, as a Brahmin made peace and apportioned the relics equitably. 
  • In the center is a representation of the temple later erected at Bodhgaya. To the right, the demon hosts of Mara have been defeated by Buddha and flee in a disorderly retreat. To the left, a celestial host with musicians and drummers approaches in reverence.  

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Saturday, December 15, 2012

Mysore Zoo - Ring Tailed Lemur

Mysore Zoo is the most popular zoo at Mysore in India. There are various wild animals and birds at the zoo. One among them is ring tailed lemur.

It is the most recognized lemur due to its long, black and white ringed tail.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Chini Mahal, Devgiri Fort

The formidable 14th century Devgiri Fort at Daulatabad, 15 kms from Aurangabad is a prime attraction. Here Chini Mahal insaide the third gate of the fort is an important monument.

It is a two story building that was once upon a time inlaid with blue and yellow enameled, en-caustic tiles from China. Hence it was also known as Chinese Palace. Now only a portion of the tiles remain and the roof of the building has collapsed. The upper floor is well ventilated and has two chambers.

Here ruler of Golanda, Abul-Hasan, the last Qutb Shahi Ruler was imprisoned by Mughal Emperor Aurangzed from 1687 to 1700. This place was more used as a Royal prison rather than a palace.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Ajanta Masterpieces

The rock-cut Ajanta Caves of 6th to 7th century are world renowned for exquisite carvings and paintings. These paintings are chronicle on the life of Lord Buddha. The Cave No. 1 contains some of the rare masterpieces of paintings.

The most famous and precious painting of all is what is known as Bodhisattva Padmapani on the left wall of the hall when we enter it. The Bodhisattva here shown as an elegant prince wearing high crown with precious stones in it. On his neck is a pearl necklace, with a central big blue stone. In his right hand, he holds an open lotus, suggesting awakening, with his gracious bent head and his golden body, the almond eyes and the delicate eyebrows.

Another famous painting is that of Vajrapani (thunderbolt), one of the earliest Bodhisattvas of Mahayana Buddhism. He is the protector and guide of the Buddha, and rose to symbolize the Buddha's power.

Other caves also have some of the rare paintings of that era.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Birds in Bannerghatta Park - 2

Bannerghatta Zoo is part of  Bannerghatta National Park near Bangalore. The zoo has wide variety of animals and birds.

I loved these small, playful black and white birds.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Madan Mahal, Jabalpur

Madan Mahal in Jabalpur is situated on the top of a 515 meter hillock. This is a small fort or bastion constructed in 12th century by Gondawana dynasty ruler Raja Madansahi.

The construction of this is very unique, that is based on top of a huge single granite rock. During theose days it mostly acted as a watch tower for the defenders to the Gondwana rulers. 

Even though the structure is compact, it can be seen as fully equipped for martial encounters in those days. There are few rooms the top and open gallery which can be reached by flight of narrow stairs. 

Monday, December 3, 2012

Udaygiri, the Jain Heritage

On the outskirts of Bhubaneswar there are two twin hills and one of them is Udayagiri. 

Here there are large number of natural as well as artificial caves that were constructed from the 2nd century BC to the 1st century AD.

It is believed that history of the place dates back to the times of Bhagawan Adinatha. During this period the place belonged to the Kalinga region and many brave and strong Jain Kings ruled here. Some of the cave temples were stated at the time of Lord Mahavira and others in the time of emperor Kharvel Ist Century BC and later. 

The prominent sites are:

The ancient idols in these caves stand as a unique example of its kind. We shall soon explore more of this place. 

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Birds in Bannerghatta Park - 1

Bannerghatta Zoo is part of  Bannerghatta National Park near Bangalore. The zoo has wide variety of animals and birds.

I loved these small, playful colorful birds.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Durgadhalli Landscape

Durgadhalli is a small village 75 kms from  Bangalore. This place is very close to another famous tourist destination Devrayan Durga.

It is surrounded by forest area and rocky terrain.

This place recently renovated temple of Sri Vidya Shnakara Swamy.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Rajabai Tower, Mumbai

The Rajabai Tower is a Clock Tower located within the Fort campus of the University of Mumbai. Recently I visited this and other near by places when in Mumbai.

The construction of tower started in 1829 was completed in 1878. The entire cost of construction of tower was funded by Premchand Roychand a wealthy merchant. The tower was named named after his blind mother Rajabai.

Modeled on Big Ben of UK, the tower was designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott, an English architect. This 85m tall tower is built using locally available buff coloured Kurla stone. Its architecture is a fusion of Venetian and Gothic styles.

The ground floor has two side room one on  either side along with a spiral staircase. At the base it has a square form. The form changes from a square to an octagon towards the top. The tower has a spiral staircase and access to the top is closed. 

It houses the library of the University, which has some of the brilliant stained glass windows in Asia. This spectacular structure has been carved beautifully with various sculptures at various stages of tower. The carvings on the external surface of the tower is exquisite.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Mysore Zoo - Red Billed Toucan

Mysore Zoo is the most popular zoo at Mysore in India. There are various wild animals and birds at the zoo. One among them is red billed toucan.

A big black bird with a white throat and a big red bill with a yellow border.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Saraswati Well, Devgiri Fort

The formidable 14th century Devgiri Fort is at Daulatabad, near Aurangabad has triple line of fort walls surrounded by moats preventing easy access to the summit. The space between the outer and the inner defenses contains many ruined palaces, temples, dargahs and mosques. 

In this region there is a well known as Sarasvati Well which is about 100 feet square and 40 feet deep. Today this well is in ruined state. It is considered sacred and named after Goddess Sarasvati. The sides are paved with square blocks of stone, and have narrow flights of steps leading to the bottom. 

The water in the well is filled by natural springs. There is used to be pipes that supplied water to it from the nearby reservoir.  

Monday, November 19, 2012

Poetry in Stone - 13

This is 13th in the series on the rich cultural heritage of ancient temples in India.  In Sanchi not only the Stupas are interesting  but the beautifully carved gateways (tornas) are one of the most elegant structures. There are 4 such carved gateways in 4 cardinal directions, depicting life scenes of Buddha and Jataka stories around the Great Stupa.

The South Gate mark is the main entrance to the Stupa. The inscription on the Southern Gate states that they have been carved by ivory carvers of nearby Vidisha. These gateways were constructed during 1st century B.C with Southern Gate being the oldest.

The architraves are carried on lion caryatids. Riders mounted on deer and horses occupy the cross squares. Pictured on the outer face of the architraves from top to bottom are: a lustration of Lakshmi, a royal visit of Ashoka to the stupa, and a scene with dwarves among foliage.

On the left post there are various interesting carvings. One of them is King Ashoka with his queens. 

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Saturday, November 17, 2012

Lalbagh Flower Show - Yellow Rose

At flower show in Lalbagh Gardens at Bangalore on August 2011 there were lot of colorful roses. The colors were bright and amazing.

Bright yellow-orange rose is one of the color on display.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Shubh Deepavali

Deepavali festival, popularly known as "Festival of Lights" is celebrated all over India with various rituals. I wish you all Happy and Safe Deepavali.

The crackers light the sky with various designs and patterns. These are some of the images on the night of Deepavali sky over Bangalore.