My journey into interior Tamil Nadu was neither a pleasure trip nor a pilgrimage. It was a quest to walk down the eons of history and understand the might of a dynasty that had left behind many architectural wonders. The Chola Dynasty is an ancient Tamil kingdom that held sway for more than 1,500 years. Narrating their story to the world are the The Great Living Chola Temples. The Brihadisvara temples in Thanjavur and Gangaikondacholapuram, and the Airaveteswara temple at Darasuram, built by Raja Raja Chola I, Rajendra Chola and Raja Raja Chola II in the 11th and 12th centuries today comprise a UNESCO World Heritage Site. I am at Darasuram, lost in the world of sculptures.
Text and photos: LAKSHMI SHARATH
Unfading Glory - Thanjavur's Brihadisvara Temple