Saturday, April 19, 2014

Vanga to Magadha: Part V - Pawapuri, the Sinless Town

Jal Mandir
By the time we reached hotel it was almost morning. Ankit was going to home; Antony and I were going to Pawapuri. So at first we went to railway station to drop Ankit and then to bus stand. We were on time, bus to Nawada already turned on her engines. Unfortunately we got the last seat. The one located just below the music system. Sound waves coming from it were bombarding in our ears. Soon we figured out that, it would become very difficult after a while. Hence we got down from that bus.

Next bus to Nawada would take around 30 minutes to come. Plenty of time to have breakfast. After breakfast we boarded the bus and slowly left the capital. Earlier Ankit told us not to calculate time to reach a place by looking at the number of kilometers we need to cover. Situation is quite different on ground. Bus route Nawada pass through Bihar Shariff and Pawapuri. In Google Maps distance between Patna and Pawapuri is just 85kms (bus charge was 70 INR), probably a two hour journey. Let’s see how much time it would take to reach Pawapuri.  I think we started around '9AM'; after spending a lot of time we finally left the city limits. However fate was against us, we reach another traffic jam very fast and stuck there.

Only thing moving in that traffic jam was second’s dial in my watch. Dust from the road was coming inside the bus like hurricane. Then came narrow roads and short cuts. At some point of time, we started moving across a dried paddy field there was hardly any road there. I think we even crossed a dried canal bed too, bridge was some 30 meters awayJ. Finally we reach Bihar Shariff. After travelling for some more time, we finally reached at the gates of Pawapuri (holy city for Jains) - 85kms took more than 5 hours!!!


In a horse pulled Rikshaw, we covered the deserted roads to reach various temples in Pawapuri. At first we went to the temple located farthest from road. It was empty, by the time we reached there it was almost afternoon.

Another temple is located just opposite to that. Drinking water was kept in an earthen pot near to the entrance. For us, tired after a long a journey, it was like nectar from heaven. Camera was prohibited inside the temple, you can’t take it inside even if you switch it off. I was quite reluctant to the idea of leaving camera outside. Probably after seeing my problem, people sitting there said “whatever you leave here will be here, even if you come after a week”. I did left the camera there and went inside.

Then to the next temple; in this was we covered two more temples and reached Jal Mandir.

Jal Mandir

Jalmandir, as name indicates is a beautiful temple made of white marble located in the middle of a pond. It is believed that Lord Mahavir was cremated here.

Main temples in this area are – Samoharshan, Gaon Mandir, Jal Mandir, Dadabari and Kundalpur. Out of this pilgrims can stay at darmashala.

By the way, if you want to visit Pawapuri keep enough money in hand. I saw only one ATM there; that too was closed. After having a late lunch we left Pawapuri in a crowded auto. This auto dropped us at junction from where a road is going to Rajgir. From here we got another shared auto going to Rajgir. This one was more crowded than the earlier one. Needless to say our journey was not at all comfortable. Outside sun moved away and darkness started Creeping in. After crossing the long walls of Ordinance factory and spending some more time we finally reached Rajgir.


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