Author: Mohammed Hussain
Hyderabad: Laxman Bagh 18th century temple at Rai Durgam in Hi-tech City is not an eyesore, it rather looks like a wretched memory of devotees who once prayed. Although construction and demolishment are lined alongside gateway to the temple it is standing still in an epiphany which reminds us of neglected heritage.
A graffiti on the temple wall reads “I am orphan adopt me,” with a tag #Hyderabadheritage, alongside, collage of wall advertisements can be seen on the entire arched boundary wall of the centuries-old temple on the Old Bombay Highway.
The road is taken by techies who travel from central and western parts of the city, it makes them think of nothing but pity. “I think it is perhaps the oldest temple in the Western Hyderabad,” said Mohan, a resident of Manikonda who works for Verizon in Hitech city, “I take this road every day and look at the temple, sometimes there is rubbish and sometimes construction waste, surely no one takes care of Hyderabad heritage,” he added.
“No one is allowed to enter inside the temple through the old gate because it is in a poor state,” said the gardener of the temple who was too shy to reveal his name.” He added, “This age-old Balaji temple belongs to the Pittie family who ingratiated themselves into business with the Nizam of Hyderabad.”
Beyond the arched walls of the temple, there are gardens, stone pavilions a well full of water and vegetation is everywhere.
“This ensemble of buildings and open spaces is considered one of the finest examples of a total heritage environment,” Omer Khalidi describes Laxman Bagh in his book, Guide to Architecture in Hyderabad, 2009, “There is an 18th-century Hindu temple within the complex, and consciously and dedicatedly maintained, unlike civic buildings. Other notable features of this complex are a well laid out garden with a well-proportioned, turn of the twentieth-century wooden pavilion.” firstname.lastname@example.org