Veerendra Heggade of the Dharmasthala Manjunatheshwara Dharmotthana Trust on Thursday inaugurated the centuries-old Sri Veereshwara temple, also known as Pataleshwara temple, at Belur. The trust had taken up the renovation of the ancient temple, keeping the aesthetical value and salient features of the Hoysala structure intact.
The temple was not attracting any visitors for several years as it was covered by weeds and shrubs.Age of the structure
Except the residents of Belur, outsiders were not aware of such a temple existing there.
Although there are no inscriptions about the temple, the trust concluded that it was built in the twelfth or thirteenth century during the Hoysala regime, based on the style of architecture and its sculpture.
The basement of the temple was looking as though it had sprouted from the earth’s surface. That was probably the reason for the temple being known as Pataleshwara temple.
Local residents constituted a committee for the restoration of the temple and approached the Dharmasthala trust for their cause. In response, the trust, which has expert engineers and retired archaeologists, restored the basement and gave a new look to the temple.Donations collected
According to the committee, the temple has been restored at a cost of Rs. 30 lakh. The trust, headed by Veerendra Heggade and devotees have given donations for the renovation.
The installation of idols in the renovated temple had begun on Wednesday.
Janata Dal (Secular) supremo and MP H.D. Deve Gowda, who was expected to attend the inaugural ceremony, however, did not attend the programme.