Vaital Deula Temple
At a distance of 700 m from Lingaraja Temple and 4.5 km from Bhubaneswar Railway Station, Vaital Deula Temple or Baitala Deuḷa is an ancient Hindu temple situated on the banks of Bindu Sarovara in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. Locally known as 'Tini Mundia Mandira', it is one of the oldest temples in Bhubaneswar.
The Vaital Temple is an 8th century temple of typical Khakara style of Kalinga School of architecture. This is one of the rare temples in India that was used as a shrine devoted to tantric cult. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Chamundi, the tantric form of Goddess Durga. The temple is one of the most highly revered ones among the Hindus and a large number of devotees come to offer their prayers on some auspicious occasions.
The deul or tower of the temple is the most striking feature of the temple. The semi-cylindrical shape of its roof bears an affinity to the Dravidian gopuram of the South India temples. The plan of the deul is oblong and the jagamohana is a rectangular structure, but embedded in each angle is a small subsidiary shrine. The facade of the deul above the left of the jagamohana is dominated by two chaitya windows. The lower one having a beautifully carved figure of sun god Surya noted for its facial expression, with Usha and Pratyusha shooting arrows on either side. The upper chaitya-window is adorned with a 10-armed Nataraja.
In front of the flat roofed jagamohana is a stone post relieved with two Buddha like figures seated in dharma-chakra-pravartana mudra. The temple is appreciated for its sculpture and architectures. The entrance is decorated with a four-faced linga with remarkable carvings. The outer walls are covered with panels of Hindu deities, mostly Shiva and his consort Parvati in her Shakti form, hunting processions, capturing of wild elephants and the occasional erotic couples.
Another striking feature is the temple's tantric associations, marked by strange carvings in the sanctum and the image enshrined in the central niche, eight armed Chamunda, locally known as Kapalini. The presiding deity, Chamundi is depicted as enthroned upon a corpse, wearing a necklace of skulls and protruding out her bright red tongue. She holds a snake, bow, shield, sword, trident, thunderbolt and an arrow, and is piercing the neck of the demon. Around the image of Chamundi, there are 15 niches that are filled with strange figures.
Timings: 7 AM to 8 PM