My photo from Odisha
Population: 35 million
Area: 155,700 sq km
Best Time to Visit: November to March
Main Language: Oriya
Literacy Rate: 48%
Orissa is a tropical state located on the east coast of India, south of West Bengal. This state has a long and renowned history, and some of the most beautiful scenery in India. Its main holy place is Puri (Jagannath Puri). Also prominent are Bhubaneswar, the state capital, and the famous Sun Temple at Konark. History The first known ruler was the King of Kalinga. In 260 BC he was defeated by Emperor Ashoka in a bloody battle, which was the catalyst that turned Ashoka toward Buddhism and nonviolence. The Kesari dynasty (7th–12th centuries) and the Ganga dynasty (12th–15th centuries) built many of the temples now existing. Hindu rulers continued to rule Orissa until the Mughals conquered it during the 16th century.
At this time, many of the Hindu temples were destroyed. After Clive’s victory in Plassey in 1765, the East India Company took control of part of Orissa. By 1803, the British controlled the entire state. Temple Design The Orissan temple architectural style is known as Nagara. As a rule, an Orissan temple consists of two essential parts: the deul and the jagmohana. The tall, main structure (deul in Orissan) is a spiraling, elevated tower crowned with a lotus-shaped top.
At the center of the deul is the inner sanctum where the temple deities are located. In front of the deul there is usually a porch structure (jagmohana) that is rectangular in shape. There may also be a dance hall (nata-mandira), a congregational hall (bhoga-mandapa), bathing tanks, and subsidiary shrines enclosed by a wall.