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Somnath… Pramukh Aadi Jyotirling…

The Somnath Temple located in the Prabhas Kshetra near Veraval in Saurashtra, on the western coast of Gujarat, India is the most sacred of the twelve Jyotirlings (lingas of light) of the God Shiva. Somnath means "The Protector of Moon God". The Somnath Temple is known as 'the Shrine Eternal', as although the temple has been destroyed six times it has been rebuilt every single time. On the last occasion, it was built after a plan was mooted by Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel in November 1947, when he visited the area for Indian Integration of Junagadh, and later after his death carried out by K.M. Munshi, also a Minister in Government of India.

Country : India
State : Gujarat
District : Junagadh 
District Capital : Junagadh 

Regional Language : Gujarati
Name in Regional Language : સોમનાથ

Time Zone : IST (UTC+5 : 30)

Geographical Location
Longitude : 70.40E
Latitude : 20.88N

Misc. Information
Postal Code :  362 265 (Veraval)
Telephone STD Code : +02876

Emergency Services ...
Emergency Help(Anything At Any Time Help) : 108
Police : 100
Fire : 101
Ambulance : 102/108
Railways General Inquiry : 131
Telephone Directory Inquiry : 197

Nearest City ...
Veraval : 04 KMs
Keshod : 41 KMs
Junagadh : 79 KMs 
Div : 105 KMs
Rajkot : 181 KMs
Ahmedabad : 406 KMs

Nearest Airport ...
Div, Keshod, Rajkot

Nearest Railway Station ...
Veraval ... Connectivity with Rajkot, Ahmedabad, Bhopal, Jabalpur

Roadways ...
Connected with Veraval, Junagadh, Rajkot, Ahmedabad
Public and Private Buses are available easily

Hotels ...
Somnath Trust has very good facilities for Tourist/Pilgrims. Book them via TRUST Office.
You will find Good Hotels in Somnath itself.
Cheap Hotels, Guest Houses also available.

Restaurants ...
Gujarati Thali, Punjabi, South Indian Available easily.

Shri Somnath Temple Trust ...
WebSite :

Contact Details ...
Chairman ...
Sec. no.:19K-12, Gandhinagar.
Phone No. : (O)+91-79-23254894

Member Secretary ...
Shri Somnath Nivas,
C-12-A Shri OM Villa Nr. Govt. Godown,
Ghoda Campus Road, Shahibaug, Ahmedabad.
Phone No. : (O) +91-79-22686335, 22686442
Phone No. : (R) +91-79-23247042
Phone No. : (M) +91-9825036101

Somnath Significance ...
Hindu mythology states that years ago, the Moon God Chandra, being arrogant about his beauty, was cursed by his father-in-law Daksha to wane. The Moon then prayed to Lord Shiva at the Prabhas tirth (a Hindu pilgrimage) who then removed the curse partially, thus causing the periodic waning of moon. 

According to Hindu mythology, Somnath Temple was first built with gold by Moon God, with silver by Ravana, with sandalwood by Lord Krishna, and with stone by Bhimdeva Solanki (Solanki Ruler of Gujarat; Solanki was one of the 5 Rajput Kingdoms in India)

History ...
The Someshwar Mahadev temple stands tall among the temples of India. The construction of the present temple in Junagadh district began in 1947. It is the seventh temple built to commemorate the glory of Lord Somnath who is said to have known as Bhairaveshwar in the Satya Yug, Shravanikeshwar in Treta Yug and Shrigaleshwar in Dwapar Yug.

According to the legends, Soma, the moon God built the temple in gold, Ravan in silver, Krishna in wood and king Bhimdev of Anhilwad in stone. Soma constructed the temple as a gesture after Lord Shiva cured him of his illness. This illness was caused by his father-in-law Daksha Prajapati's curse. Daksha cursed him to wane as he was infatuated with Rohini and was neglecting the other 26 wives, all 26 of whom were the daughters of Prajapati. It is said that Brahma advised him to build the temple in honour of Shiva.

The present temple is the seventh temple reconstructed on the original site. The first temple of Somnath is said to have existed before the beginning of the common era. The second temple, built by the Yadava kings of Vallabhi in Gujarat, replaced the first one on the same site around 649.

In 725 Junayad, the Arab governor of Sind, sent his armies to destroy the second temple. The Pratihara king Nagabhata II constructed the third temple in 815, a large structure of red sandstone.
In 1024 A.D., the temple was once again destroyed by Mahmud Ghazni who raided the temple from across the Thar Desert. Ghazni was challenged by the king, Ghogha Rana, who at the ripe age of 90, sacrificed his own clan fighting against Ghazni. The temple was rebuilt by the Paramara King Bhoj of Malwa and the Solanki king Bhima of Gujarat (Anhilwara) or Patan between 1026 and 1042. The wooden structure was replaced by Kumarpal (r.1143-72), who built the temple of stone.
In 1296 A.D., the temple was once again destroyed by Sultan Allauddin Khilji's army. According to Taj-ul-Ma'sir of Hasan Nizami, Raja Karan of Gujarat was defeated and forced to flee, "fifty thousand infidels were dispatched to hell by the sword" and "more than twenty thousand slaves, and cattle beyond all calculation fell into the hands of the victors". The temple was rebuilt by Mahipala Deva, the Chudasama king of Saurashtra in 1308 A.D. and the Linga was installed by his son Khengar sometime between 1326 and 1351 A.D.
In 1375 A.D., the temple was once again destroyed by Muzaffar Shah I, the Sultan of Gujarat. About 1400 A.D. it was reconstructed by the local public.
In 1451 A.D., the temple was once again destroyed by Mahmud Begda, the Sultan of Gujarat. It was reconstructed again.
In 1701 A.D., the temple was once again destroyed by Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. Aurangzeb built a mosque on the site of the Somnath temple, using some columns from the temple, whose Hindu sculptural motifs remained visible.
Queen Ahilyabai Holkar of Indore rebuilt the temple in 1783 A.D at a site adjacent to the ruined temple which was already converted to a mosque.

Restoration of Temple After Independence ...
Statue of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel in front of the temple before Independence, Prabhas Pattan was part of the Junagarh State, ruled by the Nawab of Junagarh. On the eve of Independence the Nawab announced the accession of Junagarh, which had over 80% Hindu population, to Pakistan. The people of Junagarh rose in revolt and set up a parallel government under Gandhian leader and freedom fighter, Shri Samaldas Gandhi. The Nawab, unable to resist the popular pressure, bowed out and escaped to Pakistan. The provincial government under Samaldas Gandhi formally asked Government of India to take over. The Deputy Prime Minister of India, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel came to Junagadh on November 12, 1947 to direct the occupation of the state by the Indian army and at the same time ordered the reconstruction of the Somanath temple. When Sardar Patel, K M Munshi and other leaders of the Congress went to Gandhi with the proposal of reconstructing the Somnath temple, Gandhi blessed the move, but suggested that the funds for the construction should be collected from the public and the temple should not be funded by the state. He expressed that he was proud to associate himself to the project of renovation of the temple But soon both Gandhi and Sardar Patel died and the task of reconstruction of the temple was now continued under the leadership of K M Munshi, who was the Minister for Food and Civil, supplies in the Nehru Government.
The ruins were pulled down in October 1950 and the mosque was moved to a different location. In May 1951, Rajendra Prasad, the first President of the Republic of India, invited by K M Munshi, performed the installation ceremony for the temple Rajendra Prasad said in his address "It is my view that the reconstruction of the Somnath Temple will be complete on that day when not only a magnificent edifice will arise on this foundation, but the mansion of India's prosperity will be really that prosperity of which the ancient temple of Somnath was a symbol.". He added "The Somnath temple signifies that the power of reconstruction is always greater than the power of destruction". This episode created a serious rift between the then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, who saw in movement for reconstruction of the temple an attempt at Hindu revivalism and the President Rajendra Prasad and Union Minister K M Munshi, saw in its reconstruction, the fruits of freedom and the reversal of injustice done to Hindus.
The present temple was built by the Shree Somnath Trust which looks after the entire complex of Shree Somnath and its environs.

Architecture ...
The Present Temple, Kailash Mahameru Prasada, is built in the Chalukya style of temple architecture and reflects the skill of the Sompuras, Gujarat's master masons.

Arrow Pillar
The Temple is situated at such a place that there is no land in between from Somnath seashore to Antarctica. Such an inscription in Sanskrit is found on the ARROW-PILLAR erected on the sea-protection wall at the Somnath Temple.

 The Arrow Pillar .......... pointing towards SOUTH Pole.