From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Mālegitti Śivālaya at Bādāmi

Bādāmi is a now a small town situated in the Bijapur district, in Karnataka, India that is situated on the side of a small hill.

Historical Significance of Bādāmi[edit]

In ancient days, this town was known as Vātāpi, and was the capital of the Cālukyan empire during the period A.D. 550-753.

Attractions of Bādāmi[edit]

Bādāmi contains several temples of the structural as well as the rock-cut varieties. Near the fort, there are temples dedicated to Hanumān and Śiva. Moreover, there are four cave-temples on the southern hill, situated on its western side.[1], which resemble the ones at Ellora.

The pillared halls in them show a high standard of workmanship and are uniformly of the same appearance. The pillars are mostly square in section, though a few of the inner colonnade in Cave no. 3 are multifaceted.

Features of the Caves[edit]

  • The first cave displays images of Śiva with 18 arms, Gaṇeśa, Viṣṇu, Lakṣmi and Śiva-Pārvatī. The back wall contains panel-figures of Mahiṣāsuramardinī (Durgā), Gaṇeśa, and Skanda.
  • The second cave depicts images of Vāmana, Varāha, Nārāyaṇa on Garuḍa, and Nārāyaṇa on the serpent Śesa.
  • The third cave exhibits images and figures of Ardhanārīśvara, Pārvatī, Narasimha, and Varāha.
  • The fourth cave present the images of the Jain Tīrthaṅkaras.

Mālegitti Śivālaya[edit]

Among the structural temples, the Mālegitti Śivālaya built on a hill overlooking the town of Bādāmi is quite significant. It is a massive solid structure, though not too large. It consists of a cella, an assembly hall, and a porch.

Cave no. 3 has fine shades like those of Ajantā. The most important and well-preserved of these is that of the betrothal of Pārvatī to Śiva. These paintings date back to the 6th century A. D.


  1. There are also three Hindu and one Jain temple
  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore