The Varanasi Heritage Dossier/Digpatiya and Causatthi Ghats

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Detailed description of each heritage Site - Chauki Ghat to Chausatthi Ghat


Digpatia and Causatthi Ghats

Digpatiya Ghat, Varanasi


Chausatthi Ghat, Varanasi

Location[edit]

25º 18.292’ North and 83º 00.525’ East (Causatthi Devi Temple).

Exact location on a map[edit]

Digpatia Ghat and Causatthi Ghat (Causatthi temple, Rana Mahal: D 22 / 17)

Area[edit]

0.30ha (the main sacred area, ghat and temple complex)

Historical/cultural/natural significance[edit]

-- The lower portion of Causatthi Ghat was built in 1830 by the king of Digapatiya (of Champaran, Bihar), that is how this is known as Digpatia Ghat. A beautiful and architecturally designed palace was built by the king at the ghat is an example of Bengali art and style. There are porches on both sides of the palace. Presently this is known as Sitarama Omkara Das Kashi ashram. The Kashi Khanda (61.176-177) described the ghat and images of Yoginis, and mentioned the two Jala-Tirthas (“water associated sacred spots”). The goddess Causatthi and her associated ghat are mentioned in the Giravana-padamanjari (1600-60). This ghat had privilege to provide shelter to a great Sanskrit scholar, Madhusudan Sarasvati (CE 1540-1623). Till 18th century the main image of the Causatthi Devi was in the Rana Mahal, a palace nearby, however later shifted to its present site. In the late 16th century the ghat was made pucca by King Pratapaditya, which in course of time partly destroyed. In ca 1670 the king of Udaipur (Rajasthan) renovated and expanded the ghat. Later in 19th century the ghat was fully renovated and repaired by King Digpatiya (of Champaran, Bihar). The present built structure was made in 1807. And, the ghat was made pucca, in the present condition, in 1965 by the Government of Uttar Pradesh. === Description and History ===: In the temple compound there are old images of Kali, folk goddesses, Shiva, Ganesha and Kartikeya. Among the 64 Yogini images, only 16 are presently existing in Varanasi. Of them two are in the vicinity of the Causatthi Devi, i.e. Gajanana, “the elephant-headed” (House: D 21/ 22) and Mayuri, “the peacock-headed”, on the steps of the ghat. The Yoginis are considered to be the most ancient group of goddesses. The number 64 (causatha) is attributed to directional symbolism and also association between mother-goddesses (8) and their assistant-goddesses (8), or in other way the division of space (eight directions) on the earrth and in the celestial realm; thus the archetype becomes 64. On 12th dark-half of Caitra (March-April) many pilgrims pay visit to the Yogini temple and take ritual bath at this ghat. Another important occasion of attraction is the evening on the day of Holi, a colourful festival showing state of Caitra - 1st, when homage ritual is performed at the ghat.

Present state of conservation[edit]

No specific measures are adopted, except that the Temple trust and local people and the local public groups look after its maintenance.

Specific measures being taken for conserving the specific property[edit]

No specific measures are taken to conserve and preserve the temple and the ghat, except to continue and maintain the daily religious activities by the local people.

Ownership[edit]

The Causatthi Temple Trust; the ghat area by the Municipal Corporation.