The Five Rathas
The “Five Rathas” isseven-temples originated in Hindu mythology which is associated to the great epic Mahabharata. It explains the heroes of Mahabharata with their wife Draupadi. Also known as pancha pandava rathas temple built with a set of magnificent monolithic rock temples. It is constructed in evolution of Dravidian style architecture as similar to the shapes of pagodas and look like a Buddhist shrine. In English language, Rathas means carrots which are built with towers. The five rathas are (i) Draupadi’s Ratha, (ii) Arjuna’s Rath, (iii) Nakul – Sahadev’s Rath, (iv) Bhima Rath and (v) Dharamraja Yudhistar’s Rath.
Draupadi’s Ratha is located at the first entrance of this temple built in a hut’s shape which is dedicated to Goddess Durga. One can view female door protector’s stand on the both side of the Rath in which one holds a bow and other a sword. A bas-relief is seen at the eastern side of the Rath which depicts Goddess Durga standing on lotus with two worshippers in which one is presenting bunch of flowers at her feet and second one is displaying a head respectively.
Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the Arjuna’s Rath is comprised of a small entrance and carved pillar stones. There are no pictures or figures whereas on the outer walls in this Rath but one will see beautiful carvings of gods and humans inside it. It has two panels in which eastern wall are beautifully designed with a picture of a double Dwarka-Palaks. The middle wall of this Rath has an image of Lord Indra riding an elephant.
NAKUL – SAHADEV’S RATH
Dedicated to Lord Indra, Nakula – Sahadev Rath consists of a double decored building. It is associated with a sign of the God of Rain. Some researchers have noticed several proofs which tell us that this Rath might have been devoted to Subramanya related with elephants.
Perched on the west, This Ratha laid third of the Rathas. The shrine measures 42 ft in length, 24ft in width and 25ft in height. The pillars of this Rath have been carved in lion’s shape while other corners are seems to be plain.
DHARMARAJA YUDHISTAR’S RATH
Among all the five Rathas, it is huge one which is constructed with innovative designs and carvings. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, it resembles the Arjuna’s Rath and displays the exceptional beautification like South Indian Temples.