Jagannath Dev Temple – The only octagonal shaped temple in Bangladesh

Jagannath Dev Temple is one of the most magnificent antiquated religious constructions of Bangladesh. Jagannath Dev Temple meanwhile Jagannath Temple is situated in Bibir Bazar of Jagannathpur Village and about 5 kilometres east of Comilla main town. The village got its name after the name of hindu god Jagannath. To the local devotees the temple is popular as ‘Saptaratna Temple’ (Temple of Seven Jewels). Meanwhile it is also known as ‘Soteroratna Temple’ (Temple of Seventeen Jewels). Perhaps this temple is the oldest one from Comilla District.

The holy temple was built by the King of Tripura named Sree Sreejukto Maharaja Radha Kishor Manikya Bahadur during 16th century. There are few hindu gods and goddesses are worshiped in this temple. Among them Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Goddess Subhadra are mentionable. The statue of these gods were initially installed in a temple at hilly area of Tripura. Later the statues were brought and re-established in this temple.

The architectural style of this edifice differs from rest of the ancient hindu temples of Bangladesh. The temple is a brick built structure and raised up on a stone of octagonal shape. This is the only octagonal shaped temple in entire Bangladesh. The whole outer wall of this holy building is thoroughly ornated from top to bottom with extreme terracotta motifs among which the third floor contains terracotta of Bengali style that flourished flowers, petals, leaves and so on. This ancient temple is 60 feet high. There is a water tank at the west side of the temple. There is a shed that contains three chariots that are being used during festivals called ‘Roth Yatra’.

The Department of Archaeology has enlisted this as a cultural heritage site of Bangladesh. As a part of preservation the Archaeology Department renovated the outside wall of ground floor and first floor as the terracotta of those floor were ruined. New Temple and Ashram are built just beside the old structure to continue their religious activity more smoothly.

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