Kalyani tank, Hulikere , Karnataka a wonderful ornate structure built by the Hoysala ruler

1160 AD. Kalyani tank,Hulikere, Karnataka tripfrolic.blogspot.com

1000 year old Kalyani ornate tank, Halebidu, KA ritzytours.blogspot.com/

Karnataka  has the largest number of monuments of historical value  in India next to Uttar Pradesh state and efforts are  afoot by the state and central governments to preserve many of the damaged  sites in this state for the posterity. One of the antiquated site is near Hulikere, a suburb of Dorasamudra (Halebidu), the erstwhile capital of the Hoysalas. According to the inscription   found at this place it belongs to the reign of Hoysala Narasimha I (1152-1173 AD) - official name - Lattayya. He  built a temple Bhuvana-bhushana Lattesvara and   executed an ornate temple tank called Kalyani in 1160 AD at this place.
Hassan District, Karnataka. asibengalurucircle.in/

This temple is dedicated to God Shiva, there are  no  temple remains on the site. But the  highly ornamental water tank, despite aging due to time and  vagaries of weather has not lost its beauty and splendor. Hulikere, is 5 kms from Halebidu on Halebidu – Hagare road (District Hassan). Here lies a unique and well-built ornate water tank in Hoysala style which is part of the Shiva temple  with  descending steps leading to the water source down below. The tank has  three  landing sites  that have as many as twenty-seven ornamental miniature shrines, some having  superstructure while others  do not have it. The presumption is these 27 miniature  shrines are dedicated to 27 stars (nakshatra). This step well differs from those in Gujarat and Rajasthan where the steps are set in  stunning geometrical patterns and at lower levels in the  well, there are  ornamental mantaps - halls . Their ornamentation defy our imagination. They are the source of water in the semi arid area,  That this  Kalyani  tank was built  for the bathing purpose of the queen is a questionable one.   

Kalyani tank, Hulikere, Karnataka  – Stufenbrunnen (kalyani)

Originally, the  Hoysalas were not ancestral rulers but  tribal leaders. They successfully rebelled against the Chalukyas.  The tribal leaders went on to  establish their own kingdom with  capitals  initially at Velapuri and  later at Dwarasamudra. The Hoysalas were great warriors and equally great builders of artistic temples Today, the two towns are  known as Belur and Halebeedu. It is said that the ruler Narashimha I spotted a dilapidated temple in a secluded place while traveling from Belur to Halebidu. He, as requested by locals and other, made special arrangement to keep the oil lamp burning in the temple. The veracity of this legend has to be verified. This tank gets filled up two thirds during the  rainy season and the water level goes down  in the summer. Lots of tourists come to Helebidu and to this place. 

With poor infrastructure this place remains unnoticed to countless tourists who miss this site. If the Karnataka Tourism Department  gives wide publicity in the print media  and improves the basic  amenities around this site, they can rope in more tourists to this historical place. This old  temple water tank -  sort of step-well type is worth a visit.