Maluti, Maa Mauliskshya temple, Dumka

Maluti temples are a group of 72 extant terracotta temples (out of the original number of 108), located in the Maluti village near Shikaripara in Dumka District on the eastern part of the Indian state of Jharkhand. These temples, according to the Indian Trust for Rural Heritage and Development (ITRHD), were built between the 17th and 19th centuries. The kings of Baj Basanta dynasty built these temples in Maluti, their capital, inspired by goddess Mowlakshi, their family deity. Many of the temples are deified with different denominations of gods and goddesses, apart from the tutelary deity Mowlakshi, and others such as Shiva, Durga, Kali and Vishnu. The Global Heritage Fund (GHF) has proposed a conservation effort, which would increase tourism to the Maluti village. GHF has declared this site as one of the world’s 12 most endangered cultural heritage sites. How Maluti — the capital of Baj Basanta dynasty — turn out to be a 'temple city' is also an interesting story. Instead of constructing palaces, the Rajas built temples. The dynasty was broken into parts (tarafs) but each taraf kept building temples, competing with the others. In the end, it turned out be a unique temple village. Inscriptions in Proto-Bengali on the temples show they were named after women.

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