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Historical Monuments & WHS

Cultural Heritage

Lalitpur, since historic times have been known for its rich social and cultural heritage and tradition. The city still displays this unique tradition and culture in its day to day life and activities. It won't be wrong to consider Lalitpur as a city of living culture rather than a heritage. Various religious and ethnic communities belonging either Hinduism or Buddhism live side by side in close harmony.

The city boasts with number of heritages both in tangibles and intangibles forms. Apart from the varieties of historic Hindu and Buddhist monuments like Bahas, Bahis, Pagoda and Stone Temples, Chaityas, Pati, Agamchhens, stone spouts etc., adorned with beautiful art and architecture, the buildings of ordinary people along the city's streets and alleys of the city form a part of its tangible heritage. The various religious and cultural activities that have survived the test of time and have continued to be indispensable part of people's day to day life too contribute to its intangible heritage.

Various Jatras or festivals, which would include various cultural and religious processions, dance, music and other various activities are even today enthusiastically observed and form an essential part of day –to-day life of its citizens.

Patan Durbar Square has been list in UNESCO world heritage sites, which is one of the seven such sites in Kathmandu Valley.

Tangible Heritage

1. Durbar Square

Patan Durbar Square located at the city centre is the focal point of all the heritages in Lalitpur. This palace complex from where the ancient rulers of this city ruled consists of 19 monuments in and around it. The Durbar Square was designated as World heritage site in 1979. It is a pride and glory of not only Patan but also the nation as a whole. It is small but has been successful in preserving its original character than other palaces of the Kathmandu valley. It is most impressive architectural site with complex of temples.

2. Temples

Different types of temple architecture have developed in Nepal since few hundred years. It is a mixed type of architecture represented by multi roofed temples, Shikharas style temples, monasteries, Patis, Chaityas, palaces, residential houses. All these represent a unified and comprehensive character which has earned for them a distinctive terminology of Nepalese architecture. As in other countries the development of a distinct Nepali style of architecture is reflected in Nepal’s religious buildings. Among many styles of architecture, the multi roofed temples or even the houses are known as traditional architecture which is named as the Nepalese or the Newari architecture also.

The most impressive characteristics of the architectural complex in Nepal are represented by temples in association with palaces and residential houses. The complex of temples is clearly visible in the durbar square of Patan. The durbar square area possesses tiered temples as well as cithara temples. The durbar square of Patan with rich cultural and architectural heritage occupies a central position in the city scope. In 1928 Perceval London very much appreciated this square “as an ensemble, the durbar square in Patan probably remains the most picturesque collection of buildings that has been set up in so small place by the piety and pride of an oriental man.”

Temples are constructed not only in durbar square complex but in other parts of the city core also. Patan is a living example of religious harmony. So one can find Hindu temple and Buddhist Chaityas in a same complex standing together. In this report only the multi roofed temples and the stone temple (Shikhara) have been discussed.

2.1 Multi Roofed Temples

The multi roofed temples commonly interpreted a pagodas are different from other religious buildings. These temples are identified with roofs of decreasing dimension, stacked one above another constituting a traditional style. It is very difficult to say about the Origin of this temple style. Buildings with tiered roof were already known in both India and China before the time of Christ, and it is assumed that the influence of Indian architecture is there in traditional Nepalese architecture. Although one of the Chinese travelers has described in 7th century that Nepali method of tiering the roof was new to them.

It is believed that these temples existed in Nepal from the beginning of the Christian era. These types of temples are built of brick, mud and timber. Although the residential building and temples are built of same materials they differ in conceptual aspects. These types of building are generally square in plan, sometimes rectangular and very rarely octagonal in plan. They are generally raised on a high plinth. The roofs number of these temples varies from one to five. Majority of temples are one to three roofed. Four and five roofed are very rare. For example Bhagbati temple of Nala and Harisiddhi temple of Lalitpur are the only two temples with four tiers. Similarly there are only two five tiered temple, Nyatapole of Bhaktapur and Kumbheshwor of Lalitpur.

Altogether 87 pagoda temples have been identified in this report; these temples have been located in the various 22 wards of Lalitpur (Chart 3.1). The ownership description of the temples shows that most of the temples are taken care of by the Guthi, and by the people of certain caste like Amatyas, Rajopadhyas, and Patravansas etc.

Kumbheshwor temple is one of the five tiered temples and is dated the oldest one from 1391 when it was completed by JayastHiti Malla with two tiers. Srinivas Malla later added three tiers to it making it five tiered. The temple is noted for its fine proportions and elegant woodcarvings. This temple is classified as of international importance that is in “A” category.

The location of the monuments shows that most of the pagoda temples are located in the core city area and the monument zone. The majority of the tiered temples lie in ward no 22 (Kumbheshwor area), 18 and 11 (Durbar Square Area) and 19. The detail information regarding the monuments, its location, ownership and category is given in Annex I.

The monuments in Kathmandu Valley have been categorized according to the Ancient Monument Act 2013, 5th Amendment as given in the Table 3.1.

Descriptions of Some important temples

A. Kumveshwore Temple

The Kumveshwore Temple is said to date from 1391 when it was completed by JayastHiti Malla, making it the oldest extant temple in Patan (Figure 3.5).The temple is noted for its fine proportions and elegant woodcarvings. There are numerous statues and sculptures around the courtyard, from the Lichhavis to the Mallas, including a particularly fine Ganesh figure. The temple is, however, dedicated to Lord Shiva, as indicated by the large Nandi (bull), facing the temple inside the main entrance.

The temple platform has two ponds whose water is said to come straight from the holy lake at Gosainkunda, a long trek north of the valley. An annual ritual bath in the Kumveshwore Temple’s tank is claimed to be as meritorious as making the arduous walk to Gosainkunda.

Thousands of pilgrims visit the temple during the Janai Purnima festival in July and August each year to worship the silver and gold lingam which is set up in the tank while members of the Brahmin and Chhetri castes replace the sacred thread they wear looped over their left shoulder. Jhankris beating drums and wearing colorful headdresses and skirts dance around the temple to complete the dramatic scene.

B. Rato Machhindranath Temple

The Rato (Red) Machhindranath temple, the god of rain and plenty comes in a variety of incarnations (Figure 3.6). To Buddhists he is the Tantric edition of Avalokiteshvara while to Hindus he is another version of Shiva. The temple’s four elaborately carved doorways are each guarded by lion figures and at ground level on the four corners of the temple plinth are reliefs of a curious yeti-like creature. A diverse collection of animals (including peacocks, horses, bulls, lions, elephants, and fish) top the pillars facing the northern side of the months of the year. The metal roof is supposed by struts, each showing Avalokiteshvara standing above figures being tortured in hell. Prayer wheels are set into the base of the temple.

The Machhindranath image is just a crudely carved piece of red-painted wood, but each year during the Rato Machhindranath celebrations it is paraded around the town on a temple chariot. The complex celebration moves the image from place to place over a period of several weeks in the month of Baishakh (April/May), finally ending at Jawalakhel where the chariot is disassembled.

Occurring on a 12 year cycle the procession continues out of Patan to the village of Bungamati, 5 km to the south. Dragging the heavy Chariot along this bumpy and often uphill track is no easy feat.

2.2 Stone Temples

The Shikhara shrines are much smaller in number than the sloping roof and multi roofed temples. Even so most of them date from medieval period. Though the multi roofed style were more prominent and prevalent in the Kathmandu valley it co existed with Shikhara style. The Shikhara is interpreted as mountain peak towered temple generally made of stone and some times brick believed to have been developed in Gupta India about 6th century A.D.

The elementary form of the temple is a small square cellar surmounted by a tapering tower together symbolizing caves and mountains. The temple is usually elevated on a steeped plinth followed by a number of molded courses. In most cases, small Deval is attached on all four sides of the main tower. Sometimes two or three small Devals are built in all sides of the tower at the ground level. The main Shikhara tapers on the top and terminates in a flattened ripped disc known as Amalaka. The Gajur is surmounted on the top of the Amalaka.

The best example of the Shikhara shrine made of stone are Cyasing Deval and Krishna Mandir of Patan Durbar Square. Krishna Mandir was built in N.S. 757 (1636 A.D.) by King Siddhinarasimha Malla. This is one of the finest stone structures in whole Nepal. The temple is constructed over three stepped platforms. It has columned arcade circumbulating the ground floor and on the first floor a row of mini Shikharas. The main shrine is located on the first floor. This temple is classified as of international importance that is in “A” category.

Thirty-four stone temples in the city of Lalitpur have been identified. The ownership of the temples is taken by Shresthas, Bajracharyas, Shakyas and Guthi as well. These temples have been categorized into three groups, A, B and C, according to the Ancient Monument Act of 2013 5th Amendment. Most of the stone temples fall in local category that is category “C”. The detail information regarding the stone temples its location, ownership and category are given in Annex I.

2.3 Pati and Gate

There are number of Patis (or Sattals or Chappa), which are the public rest house of the early days in the city of Lalitpur. In early days, apart from providing resting place for the tradesmen and travelers, they used to be the place for socio-cultural gatherings and functions and were important component of the urban settlement.

In early days, the cities and settlements of Kathmandu Valley had a definite city boundary beyond which the expansion rarely occurred. There were well laid roads within them and the major road that lead to places outside the city and surrounding lands would have artistic gates constructed to mark the point of entry and exit to and from the city. In the city of Lalitpur there used to be 21 artistic gates in the city (Annex I). Patan Dhoka that still exists today is one of them.

2.4 Stone Water Conduit

From the ancient times man has always tried to have water nearby. In the same context, the people of Kathmandu valley have managed to bring water through stone water spout. Water spout are highly decorative elements representing the old culture and civilization fulfilling the water demands till date.

Hitis exhibits the glorious past architectural development in urban design of valley cities. Hiti is a legacy of past working till date in many situations showing great engineering feat of our ancestors. Tusa Hiti in Mangal Bazaar is the highest epoch of stone water spout. Manga Hiti is the oldest one dating 570 A.D (492 Baisakh)

The water spouts were designed with their own source, often in the hinterland of the Patan city. There existed extensive network of canals (Rajkulo) for transportation to the city. Large-scale urban reservoirs (Pokhari) also existed which are believed to play an important role in charging ground water table and thus formed an important element of the entire water network consisting of Hitis and wells. Naricha, Nayekhyo, KhwayeBaha has been confirmed as major aquifers in Laitpur.

In Lalitpur there are fifty six stone water spouts (source: LSMC). Of these, 28 of are running satisfactorily and there is sufficient amount of water flow in the taps. There is very little flow of water in 12 but it increases during the rainy season. There is no flow of water in 4 water spouts and thus requires proper maintenance including cleaning of the source. The rest are said to have been filled up and covered according to the local people. However, some of these could also be restored for cultural preservation if not for functional use. The location and condition and distribution of the spouts in each ward are given in Annex I.

2.5 Pond (Pokhari) and Well

There are altogether 25 Ponds (Pokharis). Major ones are Prayag, Jawaklakhel and PimBahal Pokhari. in the past there used to be many more ponds within the historic city of Lalitpur, which were a vital element of its traditional water supply system. However, many of them have vanished due to drying up, encroachment, and lack of proper maintenance and attention.

As a vital element of traditional water supply system, the city of Lalitpur has 226 wells, many of which are in good condition. However, these wells do not include those built in recent times by the individuals. The traditional wells were often located at courtyards and public spaces and used by the whole community, only few were private owned.

2.6 Ashok Stupa

According to legend five Stupas were built by Ashoka, the Mauryan King of India, while he was visiting Patan on a pilgrimage. At that time Nepal was ruled by the Kirati Kings. These Stupas were often built upon a mound of earth covered with grass. The four Ashokan Stupas in Lalitpur are at Lagankhel in the south, Imadol in the east, IBahi in the north and Pulchowk in the west.

2.7 Bahal and Bahi

The Newar Buddhist Monastery, with its associated cult objects, is the focus of Buddhism in Patan. The monastery has developed out of an ancient Buddhist design, consisting of a two storey building made up of open halls around a square courtyard. This courtyard is characteristically set back from the road, contrasting from the Hindu temples set up on a multiple plinths in the street and at the crossroads. The Bahals consists of Buddha shrine opposite to the entrance, and sometimes there is also a Ganesh or even a Harati temple.

The Newar Buddhist monasteries have at least one and usually many Chaityas. These are the basic Buddhist cult object, depicting Buddhas on its four sides, and whose forms have gone through long and complex architectural and iconographic evolutions. There are 16 main Bahals in Patan followed with 13 Bahis. Both Bahal and Bahis areas have also been classified according to the national and international importance in category A, B and C.

According to DOA Kwa Baha, UkuBaha, HaBaha and GujiBaha are classified in category “A” as they have been able to retain the features typical of Baha courtyards. BhincheBaha, BuBaha, SuBaha are classified in category “B”. Similarly TagaBaha, and TaBaha are listed separately and classified as category “C”. The ownership of majority of the Bahals belongs to the Sangha.

The most ancient architectural form is preserved in the Bahi type. Bahi, which have retained their classic form, are CikaBahi, IbaBahi, JyaBahi, NakaBahi, NhaykaBahi, UbaBahi, IBahi, PintuBahi and KontiBahi. Many Bahis are in a state of collapse. Among these are KhvayBahi, KhvayBahi Cidhagu, IlaBahi and KinuBahi. Some Bahis have been taken over by their members. This has happened in Mul GuitaBahi, GustalaBahi, ThapaBahi, DhapagaBahi and Kvecvagu etc.

PintuBahi, NakaBahi, NhaykaBahi are classified in category “A”. Although in bad state of repair Pintu Bahi preserves the most typical architectural features of Bahi architecture.

2.8 Description of Vihars

A. Shankerdev Samskarita Mayurvarna Mahavihara (Bhinche Baha)

BhincheBaha is located north-east of Sundhara. This Baha has a large courtyard, brick paved and well maintained. The main shrine of Kwapadyo consists of three storey pagoda with a pinnacle or Gajura. The shrines main entrance faces west. The courtyard is decorated with Dharmadhatumandala, Vajradhatu, three Chaityas, and one Chaitya Stambha. The Sansrit name for this Bahal is “Shankerdev Samskarit Mayurvarna Mahavihar”.

B. Indradev SamskaritaJay Manohar Varma Mahavoihara (Su Baha)

Su Baha is considered as one of the ten most ancient Bahas. This Bahal is situated in an entirely closed courtyard in Su Baha Tole, one of the oldest parts of Patan. Two Licchavi Chaityas are found in the Baha, which has an inscription on it. The inscription does not mention the Baha but its presence indicates the antiquity of the site. The main shrine of the Baha faces west with its entrance marked by two stone lions and two bells. The shrine has well carved struts and the courtyard retains its Pasukajhyah with representation of Buddha above.

The Baha is taken care of by the Sangha which is initiated by the Sixty Shakyas. The members of the Sangha take turn every eight days, from eldest to youngest to serve as Dyopalas. Originally the site of the Bahal is said to be a cremation Ghat.

C. Baladhar Gupta SamskaritaBaladhar Gupta Mahavihara (Yachhu Bahal)

YachhuBaha is said to have been founded by Baladhar Gupta and named after him as Baladhar Gupta Mahavihara. This is a small Baha situated in a courtyard just north of the Sundhara area. The Baha is taken care of by the Sangha members. There is one Sangha of five initiated members. They take turns serving as a Dyopala in the temple of Kwapadyo . The annual festival of the Baha is celebrated on the full moon day of the month of Magh. Very little is known about the history of this Bahal. Some say that the orphaned people of Uku Bahal had no means of support so they were given this Bahal as means of support. The Baha was then renovated with the help of the Uku Baha Sangha.

D. Divya diwakar SamskaritaShree Vaisyavarna Mahavihara (Guji Baha)

Guji Baha was founded by Vaisya Diwakar Varma. This Baha is located in Sundhara area. The Licchavi style Chaitya mark the north entrance of the Bahal. The earliest of this Bahal is given on the manuscript of N.S. 373 (1253 A.D.) from the time of Abhay Malla. The main shrine of Kwapadyo is a well preserved three-storied shrine. The Baha is taken care of by the Sangha members. The Sangha of this Bahal consists of about 150 Shakyas. They serve as Dyopalas in the Kwapadyo shrine in order of seniority in fifteen days interval. The priest of Bu Bahal performs the rituals whenever a Bajracharya is required.

E. Shivadev Samskarita Rudravarna Mahavihara (Uku Bahal)

Uku Baha was founded by Shivadeva Varma. The Bahal was said to be later renovated by Rudradev so it is named as “Shivadev Samskarita Rudravarna Mahavihara”. The Bahal was established in Wankuli area so also known as Wankuli Bihar. Later the name changed to Wankuli- Unkuli- Uku Bahal. This is one of the best-preserved Bahals of Patan with the second largest Sangha and greatest number of branches. It is said that the residents of this Bahal are shifted to a separate place so that the Bahal could be preserved as a shrine.

The main shrine of Kwapadyo is facing north with two-gilded copper roof. The Kwapadyo is a statue of Aksobya. The courtyard is full of figures like bronze images, pair of winged horses, Garuda, pair of horned horses, lions. The courtyard also contains the statue of Rana Prime Minister Juddha Shumsher who donated money for the repair of the Bahal after the earthquake in 1934.

F. Balarcana Dev Samskarita Jyesthavarna Mahavihara (Tanga Bahal)

Tanga Baha is also known as Caku Baha. The Sanskrit name of the Baha is “Jyesthavarna Mahavihara”. It is located on the east side of the road leading south from Patan Durbar. The main shrine of the Baha is a small two-tiered freestanding temple within an enclosed courtyard. The main shrine houses a small red image of Padmapani Lokesvara, popularly referred to as Caku Baha Dya or Minnath. Some say that the name is derived from the word Caku, which means molasses, which, is offered to the god. Others speculate that it is derived from Newari word for sparrow (Chakuncha), because the location is supposed to have been chosen by sparrows.

The image is also called the Jatadhari Lokesvara and is the Kwapadyo of the Sangha of the Baha. The shrine of the Baha faces west. The courtyard is full of Chaityas and a Dharmadhatumandala. The northeast corner of the courtyard has an open shrine dedicated to Janmadvara. On the southern side an old building exists which is also known as the Dyochhen of Vasundhara. The earliest inscription found there is dated N.S. 245 (1125 A.D.) which was put there while installing a golden Gajura.

G. Mandeva Samskarita Chakravarna Mahavihara (Cuka Bahal)

The Bahal is situated south of Tangah Baha. This Baha was said to have been founded by King Mandeva I. Although this Baha is one of the oldest Bahals of Patan it now remains as a branch Baha of Kwa Bahal. The Sangha of the Bahal is composed of 26 Bajracharyas who are originally from Nyakhachowk and are members of Sangha of Kwa Bahal.

H. Bhuvanakar Samskarita Dharmakirti Mahavihara (Ta Baha)

TaBaha in Sanskrit is named as "Bhuvanakar Varma Samskarita Dharmakirti Mahavihar”. This Baha is said to have been founded by Bhuvanakar Varma. The Baha house the temple of Rato Machhindranath and Kwapadyo. The Baha and the temple are two separate entities. The shrine of Kwapadyo is located in the southern part and the temple in northern part.

The temple is three storeyed with copper roof and the shrine of Kwapadyo is a simple one. The shrine of Kwapadyo requires maintenance. Most of the houses in the Baha are occupied by the Dyapalas from the Bajracharya family. Some part of the Baha is currently occupied by the Guthi Sansthan office. This Bihar is considered as one of the most ancient Bihars of Patan. The earliest reference of the Baha comes from the inscription of IbaBahi Dated N.S. 547 (1427 A.D.).

I. Laxmi Kalyan Varma SamskaritaRatnakar Mahavihara (Ha Bahal)

Ha Baha is also known as Hakha Bahal or Hatako Baha. This is among the few Bahals of Patan to retain its architectural character. This Baha is also known as Ratnakar Mahavihara and was founded by Laxmi Kalyan Varma. King Siddhinarsing Malla worked for the maintenance of the fifteen Bahals of Patan and Hakha was one of them. It is said that it was the king who shifted this Bahal from Mul Chowk to the location where it is now (N.S. 738-71).

The main shrine of Kwapadyo with three storey is opposite to the entrance. The main entrance is marked by two large lions mounted on stone bases supported by crouching elephants (Figure 3.15). The shrine of the Kwapadyo occupies the southern wing. There is a Licchavi Chaitya in front of the shrine, three Dharmadhatumandalas and a Vajra in the courtyard.

The Baha Sangha consists of three lineages, Bajracharya, and two of Shakyas. When the Bahal shifted from Patan Durbar area, the Bajracharyas refused to move and they left the Sangha and joined the Sangha of Bu Baha. The Sangha of the Bahal take turns serving as Dyopalas. One of the main features of the Sangha of the Baha is that they worship the living goddess of Patan, Kumari. The Kumari is always selected from the families of Ha Baha and whose official residence is in quarters directly behind the Baha complex.

J. Bidhyadharsarma Samskarita Yashodharvarma Mahabihara (Bu Bahal)

Bu Bahal lies off the main road to Patan Durbar in the area of GaBahal (Figure 3.16). The Bahal consists of a large courtyard whose entrance is guarded by two stone lions. To the left side of the entrance facing north is the main shrine which is three storied and in Pagoda style. In Sanskrit the Bahal is called “Bidhyadharsarma Samskarit Yashodharvarma Mahabihar”. The total area covered by Bu Bahal is 4 ropani- 11 Anna- 1 Paisa- 2 Dam. The Bahal is taken care of by the Sangha. Various rituals are performed in this Bahal. The most important one takes place in the second day of the month of Magh. Every three years and during initiation (Barecuyegu), all the sons of the Sangha members assemble in the courtyard to have their horoscopes prepared.

K. Sri Vaccha Mahavihara (Si Baha)

Si Baha is located in a closed courtyard at the western edge of the city. This Baha is also known as Sri Vaccha Mahavihara. This Baha is said to have been established by King Siddhinarsimha Malla and renovated after the great earthquake of 1934. The earliest date associated with this Baha is found in the Pancharaksa manuscript dated N.S. 509 (1389 A.D).

The shrine of Kwapadyo is a well preserved structure with four storeys. The entrance of the shrine is marked by two stone lions. The Kwapadyo is a standing image of Buddha locally referred to as Ratnapani Bodhisattva. The topmost roof pinnacle of the shrine is a Gajura with three guilt Chaityas. There is a Dharmadhatumandala and a Chaitya with circular base in the courtyard.

L. Rudradev Gargagotra Varma Samskarita Dattanama Mahavihara (Dau Baha)

Dau Baha was founded by Rudradev Varma. There are no certain historical evidences about this Bahal. The Bahal was said to have existed during the rule of King Siddhinarsimha Malla and was supported by royal grant. Dau Baha is a fully enclosed courtyard with the entrance of Kwapadyo shrine marked by two stone lions. The shrine is surmounted by a characteristic tower topped by golden finial. The entrance leading to the Baha is defined by a Pati where there are images of Mahankal, Ganesha and Manjushree.

M. Bhaskerdev Samskarita Hiranyabarna Mahavihara (The Golden Temple/ Kwa Bahal)

This is one of the 18 main Bahals of Patan. The Sanskrit name of the Bahal is given as “Bhaskerdev Samskarit Hiranyabarna Mahavihar”. The name of the Bahal was given according to the saying that there was a mouse named Hiranyak with eyes sparkling like diamond. This Bahal is located in Kwalkhu Tole, north-west of Mangalbazaar. Built outside the boundary of the palace of Kirat King Patuk this was called Kwathalakhu Bihar. Later it was called Kwatha Bihar then Kwa Bahal. Nowadays the Bahal is popular by the name of the Golden Temple. The Bihar is said to have been constructed by Bhaskerdev of Medieval Era. This Bahal is famous for the Golden Temple inside the Bahal and has been identified as one of the religious centers of the valley. This Bihar is very well known from the name of “The Golden Temple” all over the world and many tourists come to visit this Bihar. There is always a huge gathering of devotees in the month of Shrawan for various Pujass. People come here to fast as well as request for the reading of the Pragyaparmita.

Pragyaparmita of the Golden Temple

Hiranyabarna Mahavihar is not only a religious area but this is the place where religious book (Grantha s) of Buddhism is recited. This Bihar is famous for one of the main nine Ganthas “Pragyaparmita”. This Grantha was written by a monk named Ananda in B.S. 1282 during the reign of King Abhaya Malla. This Astasahashrika Pragyaparmita is written in golden letters. People believe that this Grantha was kept in this Bihar to protect from evil nature of people. People from various regions come to read this book. From B.S. 1995 this Grantha was kept safe in a box. A separate Guthi has been established for the reading of this religious book. The local people believe that if they ask to carry out the reading of this book once, their every desire will be fulfilled. Nowadays people have to register their names months before for the reading of this book.

N. Guna Laxmi Varma Samskarita Guna Laxmi Mahavihara (Dhum Baha)

Dhum Baha is known by its Sanskrit name Guna Laxmi Mahavihara. The Baha is said to have been founded in the reign of King Siddhinarsimha Malla, but the dated reference of this Baha begins from N.S. 682 (1562 A.D.) after the period of King Siddhinarsimha Malla. DhumBaha lies to the north of the durbar square at Sankhamul in the area known as Ko Baha.

The main shrine of Kwapadyo is a stone image of Aksobya facing north with corrugated roof. In the courtyard are a large votive Chaitya and a mounted Vajra. The Sangha of the Baha consists of 25 Bajracharyas. They perform the usual rituals in the shrine of the Kwapadyo morning and evening. Legend of the Baha says that this Baha serves the members of the ironsmith caste. They believe that Lord Buddha baptized an ironsmith just as he baptized a barber to monkhood in India.

O. Surya Varma Samskarita Vajrakirti Mahavihara (Wam Baha)

Wam Baha is located to the northeast of Patan Durbar. It was founded by Surya Varma and the Sanskrit name is Vajrakirti Mahavihara. The inscription found in the Baha dates back to N.S.561 (1441A.D). The courtyard of the Bahal is brick paved, with a Vajra, votive Chaitya and an old Lichhavi style Chaitya. The houses around the Baha courtyard are occupied by Shakyas and Bajracharyas.

The main Pujas of the Bahal is on the full moon day of Falgun. The annual festival of the Baha used to be observed in Mangsir by the Sangha of this Baha and Jyo Baha, one year at WamBaha and next at JypoBaha.

P. Rudradev Nangapala Samskarita Jyotivarna Mahavihara (Jyo Baha)

History of this Baha not much known. Jyo Baha is said to be founded by Rudradev Nangapala who later named it as Jyotivarna Mahavihara. This Baha is located directly behind the Durbar Square and retains none of its original buildings except the shrine of Kwapadyo . The entrance of the shrine is guarded by two lions.


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