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Neglect Shrouds Padma Prakashwar Mahadev Temple
An interesting thing about the temple is that the jaladhar of the Shivalinga faces east whereas almost all jaladhars in other Shivalaingas are faced south. The water offered to the Shivalinga falls on the idol of Lord Ram situated on east side of the Shivalinga.
The Padma Prakashwar Mahadev Temple in Tikapur is believed to be the place where Lord Parashuram used to offer water to the Shivalinga during Tretayug. However, the exact date of its construction is still a subject for research. According to some archeological proofs found at the temple area, its renovation was done more than 100 years ago in 1965 BS by then Queen Padmakumari, Queen of late King Prakash Shah.
It is believed that the temple got its current name after its renovation as Queen Padmakumari added her and her husband’s names to the temple.
An interesting thing about the temple is that the jaladhar of the Shivalinga faces east whereas almost all jaladhars in other Shivalaingas are faced south. The water offered to the Shivalinga falls on the idol of Lord Ram situated on east side of the Shivalinga. According to Chief of the Temple Conservation Committee Bidur Kayastha, it is not known why the Shivaling is in that position. He claimed, "This is the biggest Shivalinga in Nepal."
The Shivaling inside the temple is 402 cm tall and 172 cm round. Various spiritual gurus from India and Nepal such as Swami Madavshram from India in 2068 BS and Nepal's Sataradham's Jagat Guru Mohan Sharan in 2069 BS have claimed that the Shivalinga of Tikapur is the tallest in Nepal.
The temple holds religious significance as it is connected to India's Nimesharayan and Mansarobar. In ancient times, devotees compulsorily visited the temple while traveling to and from Mansarobar. The trend, however, started fading as new routes to Mansarobar were developed, according to Kayastha. He added, "The temple is losing visitors and tourists for lack of promotion."
According to Kayastha, people that are unable to have kids mostly visit the temple. It is believed that those who pay their visit to the Padma Prakashwar Mahadev are blessed with children. After having kids, the devotees visit again to pay homage to Lord Shiva.
Moreover, this is the only temple in Karnali region that gets budget from the government for various rituals. Every year, the temple gets Rs 10,000 from the government. Kayastha said they, however, don’t know the exact date of when the government started providing allowance to the temple.
Currently, the temple is spread around two kattha and 10 dhuri land. According to an article published by the Guthi Sansthan in 2071 BS, the temple owns as much as 371 bigaha land. Nainadevi Temple of Dhangadi is another temple registered in the Guthi Sansthan.
However, the Guthi Sansthan has failed to provide details of the land, as per Kayastha. Nevertheless, the Temple Conservation Committee is all set to conduct a research on the temple's property. According to a local Damodar Khadka, though Tikapur residents have been working for the temple’s promotion, involvement of government authorities concerned is negligible. He added that proper development and management of this cultural heritage along with an increase in cultural tourism are vital to develop the area.