Located 40kms from Barmer district of Rajasthan the Kiradu temples are a group of ruined Hindu temples. The temple is in the town Kiradu and hence the name Kiradu temples.
The ruins of Kiradu temples have been a hot topic of research among the historians due to the stories of its cursed temples. It is believed that this was a group pf 108 temples built in the 11th-12th century. But as of now only five temples are left.
One of the temples among the five ruined ones is Someshwara temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. Owing to the erotic sculptures that still left there the locals call these temples as “Khajuraho of Rajasthan” or “Mini Khajuraho of India.”
But despite being famous for its architectural beauty the Kiradu temples are famous as a haunted place. Even today the locals are gripped by fear, myths and a sense of mystery. There are many haunted stories linked to this place. One of the stories believe that anyone who stays in the town at dusk would turn into a stone. Therefore, the temples remain deserted after sundown.
STORY BEHIND THE CURSE OF KIRADU TEMPLES
According to the legends Kiradu was formally called Kiradkot. It was a kingdom of Kirad rajputs that ruled around 6th century A.D. The people of this town were devotees of Lord Shiva and hence there are many temples dedicated to him. In the 12th century, a king of the Parmar clan also known as Someshwar took the reign in his hands. Unfortunately a time came when Turushka invaders attacked the town of Kiradkot. In order to save his kingdom Someshwar sought refugee at the feet of a great sage. The sage helped him in saving his prosperous kingdom and driving out the invaders.
One day the sage took his leave from the kingdom. He asked the king to look after his disciple. But the king and his subjects got disillusioned and prodigal and forgot to look after the needs of the sage’s disciple.
When the disciple fell severely ill, nobody was there to even give a glass of water. Only a potter woman took pity on him and stood by his side. When the sage came back he was very furious about the ungrateful attitude of the king and his subjects.
As a result, the sage pronounced a curse a cursed on the kingdom, saying that the citizens living there will turn into stone for their lack of humanity! However he left the potter woman who looked after his disciple and asked her to leave the town soon. She was further asked to avoid looking behind lest the curse turns her into a stone. As the woman was leaving the cursed place, out of sheer curiosity, she made the mistake of looking behind, thereby, turning into a stone.
This story by the locals has still prevented the people from testing the authenticity of the curse after the sundown. The fear of being turned into a stone is still there.
However, the erotic structures and sculptures of other gods are unique about the Kiradu temples and are hiding some astonishing facts. Apparently, this small town in Rajasthan appears to be another mysterious place like Kuldhara and Bhangarh.