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Archaeological Survey of India, Ranchi Circle is newly created of A.S.I. which have been bifurcated from Patna Circle in 2003. Before creation of Ranchi Circle, it was a Sub-Circle under Patna Circle and the office of Conservation Assistant was estabilished at H.I. - 31, Harmu Housing Colony, Harmu, Ranchi.


    ITKHORI, DIST:- CHATRA ( JHARKHAND)

The temle complex of Bhadrakali at Itkhori in the Dist. Chatra was inspected by a team of Archaeological Survey of India, Ranchi circle comprising Sri N. G. Nikoshey, Superintending Archaeologist, Sri M. K Brahmchari Gr. II and Sri K.K. Jha, Photographer Gr. I.

The village is situated  about 10 miles  south-west of Chaouparan on the Grand Trunk Road. Itkhori is the second important shakti pitha of the region  after Rajrappa. There  are three modern temple in a row in the Bhadrakali temple complex. These three temples are dedicated to Bhadrakali, Punchmukhi Hanuman and Lord Shiva, besides there is a modern Yagnashala too. All these temple are reconstructed over the ruins of an old temple.

The modern Bhadrakali temple  complex is constructed  on the ruins of an early medieval temple. The people of this region are attached sentimentally with this living temple but they are also aware with the historical and ethical value of the site. As a result the State Govt. has  constructed  a sculpture  shed to store the architectural fragments  recovered from time to time. In courses of levelling and construction work of the temple complex, some sculpture of black stone were also  recovered from this area, belonging to late Pala period, were kept in the temple and are under worship. One of among these sculptures is a Buddhist deity Tara. There is an inscription of Mahendra Pala Deva on it and is datable 8th- 9th  century A. D.

It is an open air site with extension of 500mx1000m in east- west and north south direction. A huge amount of sculpture were recovered while levelling the area  for reconstruction of the temple by the Dept. of Tourism, Govt. of Jharkhand. These are now housed in store room near   the temple as well as in the temple itself. Some of the important sculpture  are Vishnu ( four numbers ), Uma Maheshvara  (three numbers) and Goddess Durga are kept in the premises of the temple and are under worship. North- west to main temples are two modern temples of which one is constructed over an ancient huge  Shahasra Shivalinga (thousand linga carved over a Shivalinga) whereas in the other temple a huge votive stupa of black stone has kept . Several architectural fragments are also scattered in the premises in the  temple and are under worship, which indicates the existence of full developed medieval temple at the site.

Towards east of the main temple, a dried up ancient pond is located. Architectural remains are also noticed on the north- eastern side of the pond, which is presently known as Kanuniya temple. In the near by area a partly exposed brick structure is also noticed.

Further west to the main temple foundation of ashlars masonry is also noticed which is of latter period because  a lot of architectural members is refused to make this foundation and the superstructure is not built even up to its jangha portion. Apart from these, a good number of potsherds mainly of red ware have been noticed in course of the inspection. The shapes are dishes, bowls, pots and lamps.

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