(Last Updated on : 18-05-2009)
In the state of Karnataka , numerous cities and places have developed over the years, each contributing to the culture and heritage of the state as a whole. In the Hassan district, Halebidu has been located and also has gained significance. In fact this Halebidu has drawn the attention of quite a handful of historians. Reasons also are cited. According to them, Halebidu was the majestic capital of the Hoysala Empire as early as twelfth century. Apart from that the beauty of the place of Halebidu has been largely due to the art and architectural wonder of the then Hoysala kingdom. Interestingly, Halebidu houses one of the best examples of the Hoysala architecture in the elaborate Kedareswara and Hoysaleswara temples. It was Ketamala who had constructed this beautiful Hoysaleswara temple of Halebidu at the same time. It was ascribed to the Hoysala king , namely, Vishnuvardhana. Not only that , it has enclosed shrines of Hoysaleswara and Santaleswara, identified by the patron king Vishnuvardhana Hoysala and his lovely wife, Queen Santala. Then in the beginning of the fourteenth century, the large army of the Malik Kafur took control of the temple. Soon, this temple of Halebidu was utterly neglected and falls in desolation. Till date the situation has not changed much.
Apart from these two Hindu temples, the temple complex comprises of two Jain basadi also .In Halebidu , there is a huge lake just in front of these temples .This lake has got a far greater significance. According to several etymologists, the Halebidu town gets its name from the lake, Dhwara samudhra that signifies entry from ocean.
For beatification of the temple of this Halebidu city , several things are used . By the side of the Hoysaleshwara temple, two nandi bull statues are found which are quite huge in size and structure. Besides, soap stone or Chloritic Schist was also used for building these temples of the Halebidu city. However invaders destruct a number of sculptures in the temple. Thus till date the temple in this Halebidu is still considered to be incomplete.
In Halebidu, there is also an archeological museum within the temple complex. In other words, the Hoysaleswara temple, which dates back to 1121 C.E., is astounded by people from all over Indian for its wealth of sculptural details. The walls of the temple are engraved with a continual range of depictions from Hindu mythology. These include animals, birds and Shilabalikas or dancing figures. Appreciating the architectural exuberances of the Halebidu , whai is interesting is that the UNESCO has given the proposal of declaring this temple as World Heritage Site.
In order to make the Halebidu well connected with the other places of Indian Territory, transportation system has been improved. Halebidu is only sixteen kilometers from the another historical place , namely, Belur. It is well communicated by road and rail to other places like Bangalore, Mysore and Mangalore. From Bangalore, one can reach Halebid which is only 216 kms away.
There are regular bus services to Hassan. The distance covered is only 149 km to Mysore and 31 km to Hassan.
Following the trend of most of the people of the Hassan district, it becomes apparent that Kannada is the widely spoken language of the most of the people of the city of Halebidu.
Just like many people of the whole of the Hassan district, the people of Halebidu town also carry on several occupations in order to sustain their livelihood. Tourism and coffee are their major sources of income. Agriculture too has been practiced by many of the people of Halebidu city, which grow things like black pepper, paddy and sugarcane.