The upper left
hand holds a human skull while the lower holds the head of a demon. There are also two
small idolsrepresenting Siva and a small image of Dasabhuja Mahishamardini, on the same
platform with the deity. This is obviously a Sakti temple is crowned by a chakra or
discus, which may have been set up by one of the Kaibartta Rajas. Animal sacrifice is not
The temple has the clear impact of the
Orissan style of architecture. The three apartments of the Baradeul, the Jagamohan and the
Natmandir are usually found in any of the big Orissa temples. The Jagannath Temple at Puri
has them and also a place where the Pandits sit
and have religious discourses. The Jnan-Mandap of this Midnapore temple has its
counterpart where Mukti-Mandap sits in Puri.
"Various conflicting traditions narrate how the temple was founded. The most popular
relates how in the days of king Garuradhwaj, of the ancient Peacock dynasty, a fisherman
was one day unable to procure a dish of Saul fish for the table of the king, and the angry
ordered him to be put to death.
The fisherman managed to make his escape to the jungle,
where the goddess Bhima appeared to him. She told him to lay in a stock of the fish and
dry them, and promised that she would restore them to life, when he wanted them, by
sprinkling them with water of a certain well, which had the virtue of restoring dead
things to life. The fisherman followed the instructions of the goddess, and daily took the
fresh fish to the king, who, finding that the supply never failed, in season and out of
season, questioned the fisherman, and extracted
from him the secret of the immortal well.