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Location : Patan, Gujarat.
Built By : Siddharaja Jaisinh.
Area : 17 Hectares.
Gujrat is well known for the architectural wonders it posseses within its demographic region. The monuments, forts and plush palaces of Gujrat make every tourist ponder thoroughly about the structure. The monuments of Gujrat are internationally famed and Sahastralinga Talav is one among them.
Sahastralinga Talav is located on the banks of river Sarawati and occupies the north-western part of the city of Patan. This majestic lake was built by Siddharaja Jaisinh. Jaisinh was the Chalukyan ruler of Gujarat.
Sahastralinga Talav is a part of a much larger project that is indicated from the inscription found in Shiva temple located in Vyala Kua Street of Patan. Most of the construction of this lake lies beneath the sands of Saraswati River which once filled this lake. There is a myth about this present dryness of the lake. It says that one of the diggers, named Jasma Odan cursed this lake which resulted in its dryness.
How was it Discovered?
This enormous lake which is a great work of water management by ancient Indians was excavated in the year 1936. The excavation exposed the entry channels, sitting chambers and a bridge that leads to the talav or lake. The huge water tank was filled by a canal that connects to the Saraswati River. The collected water was then spread over 5 kms through a network of masonry embankments. Along the edge of the water tank thousands of shrines of Lord Shiva were constructed. Presently, only few of those shrines are remaining. The ruins of this monument will surely speak of the grandeur of its time.
The Structure of the Lake :
The lake of Sahastralinga Talav has a pentagonal shape with several mounds that show its shape. The earthwork around the lake covers several kilometers and it is a km wide. The total area of the lake amounts to 17 hectares can hold 4206500 cubic meters of water in it.
At the center of the lake is a heap of earth named Bakasthana and above it there is a raised platform a rauza has been built.
The Myth :
There is an interesting story behind the drying out of this huge lake. Folklore say that Siddharaja Jaisinh, the builder of this lake, proposed a lady named Jasma Odan, who was one of the diggers of this lake. She refused to marry Jaisinh and commited suicide in the form of Sati to save her honor. It is because of jasma oDan’s curse that this lake became dry and Siddharaja Jaisinh was left with no heir to the throne of his kingdom.