Temples of Hajo | Hajo
Hajo is an ancient pilgrimage centre for three religions: Hindus, Buddhists, and Muslims. It lies on the banks of the Brahmaputra River, 24 km from the city of Guwahati in the Kamrup district of Assam, India. The area is dotted with a number of ancient temples as well as other sacred artifacts. The Hayagriva Madhava Mandir is the most famous temple of Hajo. Lesser known temples of Hajo like that of Ganesha was constructed during the reign of Ahom King Pramatta Singha in 1744 AD. The Kedareswara Temple, a Shiva temple, has inscription on the temple showing that it is of Rajeswar Singha period.
According to a legend popularly prevalent among the Hajongs, they are Suryawanshi (Surjo bung-shi in Hajong) or the descendants of Surjo or Bila (sun)and they are Kshatriyas. The Hajongs belong to the Indo-Tibetan group of the main mongoloid race. They had come from Tibet to the north-east India along the Brahmaputra and Tista and their tributaries and had spread over in the Sankush Valley. Some recordsstate that the Hajongs were a section of the Indo-Burmese group of the Mongoloid Race. The Hajongs claim that their ancestral home was in Hajo area of present Nalbari district of Assam. The meaning of 'Hajong' can be comprehended as 'descendants of Hajo'.
- Hayagriva Madhava Temple is situated on the Monikut hill. The present temple structure was constructed by the King Raghudeva Narayan in 1583. According to some historians the King of Pala dynasty constructed it in 6th century. It is a stone temple and it enshrines an image of Hayagriva Madhava. Some Buddhists believe that the Hayagriva Madhava temple, best known in the group of Hindu temples, is where the Buddha attained Nirvana. At this imposing temple, the presiding deity is worshipped as the Man Lion incarnationof Vishnu by the Hindus. It is a stone temple and it enshrines an image of Hayagriva Madhav. The rows of elephants are seen on the body of the temple and they are fine specimens of Assamese art. There is a big pond known as Madhab Pukhuri near the temple. Doul, Bihu and Janmastami festivals are celebrated every year in the temple. Moreover this temple preaches both Hinduism and Buddhism, which attract Buddhist Monks from far flung places. Sayani, the first wife of Kalia Bhomora Borphukan donated a family of paiks and also a plot of land for their maintenance to the Hayagriva Madhava temple during the reign of Ahom king Kamaleswar Singha.
- Hajo Powa Mecca: Hajo is also a Muslim pilgrimage centre since the mosque known as the Poa Mecca (1/4th Mecca) is thought to have some of the sanctity of Mecca. It is said that Powa Mecca was constructed from the soil that was brought from the city of Mecca itself (Mecca is the holiest city for the Muslims and is located in the Saudi Arabia). Standing atop the Garurachal Hill, it noted as the tomb of Pir Giasuddin Auliya, who was the pioneer of Islam in this part of the world. This mosque was built by Sujauddin Mohammed Shah in 1657 AD, during the reign of the renowned Mughal Emperor, Shahjahan.
- Kedareswara Temple:This is a Shiva temple with inscriptions showing it to be built during the Rajeswar Singha period.
- Madan Kamdev Temple:This temple is located 42 km east from Hajo. It is situated on top of the Dewangiri Hillock. It is one of the ancient Hindu temples of Kamrup District.