The lost legacy Oldest temple of Sharda Mata

Dr Ruchi Shah
The village Gugloosa is located in Trehgam Tahsil of Kupwara District in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir in India. It is governed by Gugloosa Gram Panchayat. It comes under Trehgam Community Development Block.
The nearest town is Kupwara, which is about 10 kilometers away from Gugloosa. As per the survey done in 2009, there are about 51.85% of males and 48.15% of females in the village population. Earlier, before 1990 there were about 8-10 Hindu families residing in this particular village. They used to pay obeisance to the ancient temple of Mata Sharda. It is believed that this temple was built by Pandavas and is about 5000 years old, though there is no written evidence as Archaeological survey of India has to evaluate it for confirmation. It was rebuilt by local people in 1978 and they were taking care of it. It has a Sheila of Mata Sharda that is believed to be very ancient. . There was a small dharamshala and agni kund to do the Hawan and other rituals next to the temple. After migration, this temple was visited by local Hindus after 30 years and it was in ruins. That Sheila of Mata Sharda is also buried under the soil. It is really disheartening to see our holy place in this disfigured state. Local people were taking care of it throughout these years but due to bad weather conditions and no maintenance, its condition has deteriorated.
There is an Asthapan known as Bhaderkali Asthapan nearby this temple where a huge Chinar is symbolised as the Mata Kaali. Before migration local Hindus used to visit this holy place and offer Tehar (yellow rice) and Kheer to Bhaderkali Mata.
Both this Sharda Mata temple and Bhaderkali Asthapan are nearby a beautiful sangam of three rivulets. The rivers are named as Kanyri, Mael and Hodd. This sangam is considered as very pious by the local Hindus. This is our cultural heritage and it is very important to reconstruct this ancient temple to maintain our roots in the place where we belong to. I request concerned authorities to take care of this ancient legacy that represents our faith and culture.
(The author is a Scientist, University of Kashmir)