Supreme Court backs move of Karnataka government to demolish restaurants near Hampi site for violation of the Mysore Ancient and Historical Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act of 1961. Previously, the Karnataka High Court had held that the Hampi World Heritage Area Management Authority (HWHAMA) was empowered to order the demolition of the illegal buildings.
Also, ASI is planning to install barricades around famed stone chariot at Hampi to protect it from vandalism.
• Hampi was the last capital of the Vijayanagar empire (14th – 16th century AD) and is located at the bank of Tungabhadra river.
• The first capital of the Vijayanagar Empire was Anegundi which is also situated on the bank of river Tungabhadra.
• By 1500 CE, Hampi-Vijayanagara was the world’s second-largest medieval-era city after Beijing, and probably India’s richest at that time, attracting traders from Persia and Portugal
• Group of Monuments at Hampi is a UNESCO world heritage site.
• Virupaksha Temple is the oldest and the principal temple in Hampi with its inception in the 7th Century AD.
• The Vittala Temple in Hampi was built in 15th century AD. It is famous for its large stone chariot (which is also used in Konark and Mahabalipuram temples). Another feature of the Vittala Temple is the 56 musical pillars also known as SaReGaMa pillars. If these pillars are tapped gently, one can actually hear the musical notes. The Vittala temple represents the culmination of Vijayanagara temple architecture with associated buildings like Kalyana Mandapa and Utsava Mandapa.
• The Krishna temple complex, Narasimha, Ganesa, Hemakuta group of temples, Achyutaraya temple complex, Pattabhirama temple complex, Lotus Mahal complex are other important sites. The Raya Gopura, introduced first in the temples attributed to Raja Krishna Deva Raya, is a landmark all over South India.
• Most of the structures at Hampi are constructed from local granite, burnt bricks and lime mortar. The stone masonry and lantern roofed post and lintel system were the most favoured construction technique. The roofs have been laid with the heavy thick granite slabs covered with a water proof course of brick jelly and lime mortar.
• Vijayanagara architecture is also known for its adoption of elements of Indo Islamic Architecture in secular buildings like the Queen’s Bath and the Elephant Stables, representing a highly evolved multi-religious and multi-ethnic society.
Chronology of the Great Living Chola Temples
Brihadeshwar Temple at Thanjavur
(By Chola King Rajaraja I (985 – 1020 CE))
The Brihadisvara temple at Gangaikondacholapuram
(By Rajendra I (1012-1044 CE))
The Airavatesvara temple at Tanjavur
(by the Chola king Rajaraja II (1143-1173 CE.))
Some recent additions to UNESCO world heritage site list
Rani-Ki-Vav at Patan, Gujarat (2014)
Great Himalayan National Park Conservation Area (2014)
Archaological Sites of Nalanda Mahavihara at Nalanda Bihar (2016)
Khangchendzonga National Park (2016)
The Architectural Work of Le Corbusier (2016)
Historic City of Ahmedabad (2017)
Victorian Gothic and Art Deco Ensembles of Mumbai (2018)
Jaipur City, Rajasthan (2019