ancient indian history

Krishna Janmabhoomi

Krishna Janmasthan Temple vs Shahi Eidgah mosque

Krishna Janmabhoomi is a significant hindu religious site in the city of Mathura, located in the state of Uttar Pradesh. It is the birthplace of Lord Krishna. According to Hindu religious scriptures, Lord Krishna was born in a prison cell in Mathura over 5,000 years ago, located at the place, where now Shahi Eidgah mosque, which was built by Aurangjeb after destroying Krishna temple. The site holds immense religious importance for hindus and has been a place of pilgrimage for centuries. Many temples and shrines dedicated to Lord Krishna can be found in and around Mathura, with the Krishna Janmabhoomi temple being one of the most prominent.
The history of the site is complex and has seen several changes during mughal & British era.
The current temple at the Krishna Janmabhoomi site, has been a focal point of religious and cultural activities for devotees from all over the world.
The temple comprise a cluster of small temples in Mallapura, Mathura.
These temples were destroyed many times throughout history, especially during the reign of Aurangzeb in 1670. He built the Eidgah mosque there which still stands.
 In 20th century, once again a new temple complex adjacent the mosque was built with the financial help from local industrialists containing the Keshavdeva temple, the Garbha Griha temple at the birthplace and the Bhagavata Bhavan.
As we are aware that, Lord Krishna was born to Devaki & Vasudeva in a jail, where they were confined by his maternal uncle Kansa, a king of Mathura.
 A temple dedicated to Lord Krishna was built, by his great grandson Vajranabh, at his Janmasthan, close to 5000 years ago. The present site, was known as Katra. The archaeological excavations of the site had revealed pottery and terracotta from 6th century BC.
Another vaishnava temple may also have erected on the place as early as the first century. A whole new magnificent temple complex was rebuilt at the place by Gupta Emperor Chandergupta II,  in 400 C.E.
A few Inscriptions (8th century) found from this place mentions donations to the site by the Rashtrakutas.

In 1017 or 1018, Mahmud of Gajni attacked these temples. Ghazni’s scribe, though not accompanying him on the expedition, Al Utbi describes in his Tarikh-i-Yamini neighbouring holy town which is identified as Mathura. He wrote, “In the centre of the city there was a huge and magnificent temple, which the people believed wasn’t built by men but by the angels, from heaven.
Any description of the temple, either in words or in pictures, would fall short and fail to convey its beauty.” Mahmud of Ghazni wrote, “if any one wished to construct a building equal to it, he would not be able to do so without spending a hundred million dinars, and the work would occupy two hundred years, even though the most able and experienced workmen were employed. He ordered to destroy & demolish all temples. He looted gold and silver idols and carried away a load of hundred camels.
A stone inscription in Sanskrit found from the site mentions that in Vikram Samvat  1207 (1150) a person named Jajja who may have been a vassal of Gahadavala  built another Vishnu temple here, which was ‘brilliantly white and touching the clouds.
During the reign of king Jehangir,  Tarikh-i-Daudi mentions about the destruction of Mathura and its temples by the forces of Sikandar Lodi in 16th century. Lodi had prohibited Hindus from bathing in the river and shaving of heads on the banks as well.
During the year 1618 A.D, Raja Veer Singh Deva Bundela of Orchha had also built this temple, once again, at the cost of thirty-three lakhs.
 Mughal prince Dara Shikoh had patronised the temple and donated a railing to the temple, but the railing was subsequently removed by Mathura governor Abdun Nabi Khan on the order of Mughal emperor Aurangzeb and thereafter he built the Jama mosque on the ruins of the Hindu temples.
During the Jat rebellion in Mathura, Abdul Nabi Khan was killed in 1669. Aurangzeb attacked Mathura and destroyed that Keshavdeva temple in 1670 and built the Shahi Eidgah in its place.
The East India Company auctioned the land of Katra in the year 1804 A.D. The land was purchased by Raja Patnimal, a wealthy banker of Banaras. Raja Patnimal wanted to build the temple but could not do so. His descendants inherited the land of Katra. His descendant Rai Krishna Das is the owner of close to 14 acres of land on which the shrine and the Shahi Eidgah are situated. Understand that
Shri Madan Mohan Malaviya acquired the land from Raj Krishna Das on 7 February 1944 at the cost of Rs. 13000 with financial help of Industrialist Jugal Kishore Birla. Following death of Malaviya, Jugal Kishore Birla formed a trust named Shri Krishna Janmabhoomi Trust, later registered as the Shri Krishna Janmasthan Seva Sansthan, on 21 February 1951 and acquired the land. Birla entrusted the construction of the new temple with another industrialist and philanthropist Jaidayal Dalmia. The construction of Lord Krishna  temple complex had started in October 1953 with leveling of lands and completed in February 1982.

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