It was the title that intrigued me. Sulthan Bathery appeared extra like a nickname and I questioned if there was a narrative right here. I had stumbled upon the city after I was driving from Mysore in direction of Wayanad nearly 20 years in the past and the thought had lingered since then. So years later, after I was staying within the attractive Lux Unlock Deja View Villa which is situated barely 20 km from Sultan Bathery in Wayanad, I made a decision to discover the city to know a little bit bit about its historical past. The primary vacation spot was the traditional Jain temple Sulthan Bathery.
The city was not all the time generally known as Sultan Bathery and its story was interlinked with the historical past of Wayanad itself. Wayanad or Bayalnad because it was known as then was as soon as dominated by the Gangas within the tenth century. Bayalnad was known as the land of swamps and fields and even at the moment, you possibly can see verdant paddy fields submerged in water. The area later got here underneath completely different dynasties from the Kadambas and Hoysalas to the Wodeyars and kings of the Vijaynagar Dynasty. Finally, Hyder Ali and his son Tipu Sultan reigned supreme earlier than the colonial powers took management over the area. And the names modified over a time period.
The villages round Sultan Bathery have been then known as Kidanganadu . A Ganesha temple constructed most likely throughout the Vijaynagar interval gave it the title Ganapathivattam. Nonetheless it was ultimately modified to Sultan Bathery. It’s believed that when Tipu Sultan was waging a struggle in opposition to the Malabar, he used the world round an historic Jain temple because the place to retailer his battery or armoury. And the city ultimately got here to be christened as Sultan Battery or domestically Sultan Bathery. it turned a dumping floor for artillery and the title has now stayed for over 200 years. The Jain temple Sulthan Bathery turned a legend by itself. Apparently there’s a Sultan Battery or Bathery, a watch tower and a fort constructed by Tipu Sultan in Boloor, in Mangalore, to forestall enemies, particularly the British struggle ships from getting into town however that’s for a distinct story.
As we drove into the city, all roads led to the traditional Jain basti or temple. There have been a handful of locals sitting and taking within the silence whereas a couple of youngsters wandered round. The temple constructed within the Vijayanagar interval dated again to the thirteenth century was set in a leafy setting surrounded by timber. It was fenced however most likely it might have been fortified, at one time, surrounded by partitions. Known as the Bathery Jain temple or Jain temple Sulthan Bathery, the shrine was constructed of granite. Strolling round, I might see the carved pillars adorning the mandapa that led to the shrine housing the Teerthankaras. One other set of pillars was in entrance of the shrine on a raised platform, which was with no roof. The pillars have been carved with varied motifs as effectively. As I walked round, I questioned if there was a hidden spot round, maybe a fort close to the premises the place the ammunition was hidden.
The silence was solely interrupted by the occasional chirping of the birds. There are hardly any Jain temples in Kerala and the shrine here’s a protected monument, preserving not simply the heritage of Wayanad, however the very identification of the city. Sultan Bathery is now one of many key vacationer locations in Wayanad and it’s also effectively related by street to Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka, linking cities like Mysore, Vythiri, Kalpetta, Mananthavady, Ooty, Kannur and Kozhikode amongst others. The jungles and mountains of Wayanad are contiguous with the Mudhumalai forests of Tamil Nadu and the Bandipur wildlife sanctuary of Karnataka and you’ll go on wildlife safaris in Thopetty and Muthanga. Your entire district is split into three foremost taluks – Mananthavady, Vythiri, and Sultan Bathery which type the vacationer triangle.
Apart from the Jain temple, the Ganesha temple right here is among the historic shrines right here as effectively. Different temples embrace these devoted to deities like Lord Shiva Narasimha and Goddess Mariamman amongst others. There are a number of outdated church buildings and mosques right here as effectively. Edakkal Caves which was as soon as the house of prehistoric women and men is barely 13 kms from Sultan Bathery.
The city itself is nonchalant about its historic identification whilst tourism has ultimately made it a poster baby for the Wayanad district. And like most elements of Kerala, it’s important to look past the touristy points to discover the true tales.