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Raja Salhesh Shrines in Bihar


Salhesh Sthan, Salhesh Gahwar or Salhesh Shrine is a temple of Raja Salhesh, the most praised god of the Dusadh community of Bihar and Nepal. The name Salhesh means the king of mountains. In Salhesh Sthan or Gahwar, we have the idol of Salhesh depicted as being seated on an elephant and at some places on a horse. On either side of him are two attractive idols of Duna and Kusuma. In the composition of idols, we find Chuharmal (usually depicted in grey) sitting alongside Salhesh’s elephant, Motiram, Budheswar (riding a horse) and guards. We also see a tiger and a ‘pind' or 'pindi’ just in front of Salhesh’s idol, which represents Durga. British colonial officer and scholar, George A. Grierson, had mentioned Salhesh Gahwars in his book published in 1882 and says in the preamble of the book, ‘In the villages of Mithila one can see Salhesh shrines under Pipal trees with clay figures representing the characters in the story’. The following is an image gallery of Salhesh shrines.