PRESIDING DEITY AND LOCATION :
Sri Shantinath Bhagwan in a standing posture of height 375 Cmsin a shrine on the hills 21/2 Kms away from village Deogadh situated on the bank of the river Betva (Dig).
ANTIQUITY AND SALIENT FEATURES :
It is believed that thousands of years agai, the area was under the authority of Shavar people. Thereafter, Pandavas,sahari, Gond, Gupta dynasty, dev dynasty, Moghuls, Bundel dynasty, Scindia Kings andfinally English ruled here.
From an inscription of the period of Bhojdev king of Gurjar, of Vikram year 919, it is found that this area was known as Luchchhagiri. In the 12th Century Vatsaraj, a minister to the king Kirtivarma of the Chandel dynasty got constructed a new fort at this place and he kept its name as Kirtigiri after the name of the king. Thereafter, possibly this place may have started to be known as Deogadh. There are several reasons for this name of Deogadh, one of them being a belief that the area was built by Gods (Deva’s). Besides, innumerable idols of all types that are found here may have also been the reason for naming the place as Deogadh. On stones, rocks and pillars there are inscriptions found here of the period between 8th and 15th centuries but from evidence that could be gathered on examination of various artistic creations, many idols are believed to be of a period even earlier that that of Guptas.
This shrine is not only an ancient one but also it is one that contains different art styles in the sculpture work of idols. The best specimen of the Bhartiya art of sculptures of images of Gods and Goddess, Yaksh and Yakshinis, halls and chambers, pillars and large plaques are found here. There are 31 large temples on the hills where these art specimen can be seen. In one of the temples, there is an inscription in 18 scripts believed to be the same that Brahmi, the daughter of Bhagwan Sri Adhinath had learnt. These scripts include Brahmi-Dravid languages also. This temple is no. 12.
In temple No. 6, on the idol of Bhagwan Sri Parshvanath there is a hooded cobra as is normally the case. Big cobras however are made on both sides of the idol. In temple No.11 the idol of Sri Bahubalji is very attractive. It is believed to have been made during the 11th century. In temple No. 13, on the heads of the idols, 18 different hair styles of hair combing are visible. In this way in almost all the temples marvelous specimen of unequalled art can be seen.
Besides the temple of Bhagwan Sri Shantinath there are, in total 39 other temples both large and small whose beauty and art, words alone can never describe sufficiently.As it is, Bundelkhand is well known fo its art and of all places therein, the art here is distinctive. In Deogadh, there is a museum where all this can be seen.
APPROACH – ROUTE :
Nearby railway station of Lalitpur is 31Kms away from where taxis and buses are available. The road passes through the hills and it is tar road right upto the end. Cars and buses can go on the hills but it is more convenient for pilgrims to settle at the dharamshala in Deogadh at the base of the hill. Because armed escort is available from here. On the hills, it is a dense and vast forest all round.
AMENITIES FOR JAIN PILGRIMS :
For lodging there is a dharamshala in Deogadh where water, cooking pots etc., are available.
MANAGED BY :
Sri Deogadh Managing Digamber Jain Committee
Post : Khakhlog – 284 407
Dist : Lalitpur, (UP)
Tel : 05176-82533