Shekhar Tek Kali Temple

সুন্দরবনে ৪০০ বছরের পুরোনো স্থাপনা

The Shekher Tek Kali Temple, believed to have been constructed in the 16th century by Raja Pratapaditya, zamindar of Jashore and one of the Bara Bhuiyans of Bengal, is a significant historical and architectural site located within the forest reserve. This temple stands as one of the few surviving remnants of human settlements in the Sundarbans dating back to the Middle Ages. It is a testament to the rich cultural and historical heritage of the region, which was once inhabited and ruled by various dynasties.

The temple's architecture and design likely reflect the styles and influences of the period in which it was built, with intricate artwork and sculptural elements that offer insights into the craftsmanship of that era. As a historical and cultural site, the Shekher Tek Kali Temple holds value not only for its architectural beauty but also for the historical narratives it preserves.

Visiting Shekher Tek Kali Temple

The Mughal era temple [...] is currently accessible only to some locals and forest department officials due to its remote location. However, the forest department is building an ecotourism centre around the historical structure to make it accessible to tourists. Dr Abu Naser Mohsin, divisional forest officer, West Forest Division, Sundarbans, said, "The construction work of the Shekher Tek Ecotourism Centre is almost done. We have already started permitting tourists to visit there on a limited basis. After the official opening, it will be fully opened for tourists." Officials said the temple is located on the east bank of the Shibsa River in the Khulna Range of the West Forest Division, Sundarbans. Ruins of different medieval structures, including brick walls, could be seen in the Shekher Tek area. Among them only the Kali temple survives now as a standing structure, they said. [...] The authorities have constructed a 1.25 km concrete foot trail from the Shekher Tek Canal to the temple. Besides, a watch tower has been constructed for tourists to observe the forest from a height. Several brick roads have also been constructed at some places in the forest. (Excerpt from The Business Standard February 2023 article: Sundarbans tourism centre for people to visit medieval temple)

Architectural elements and artifacts from the Temple Ruins. Image Source: The Business Standard

Architectural Preservation

It's important to note that maintaining and preserving such historical sites is crucial for their continued existence, and it provides opportunities for cultural and historical tourism in the region. Conservation efforts and responsible tourism practices are essential to protect and showcase these historical gems in the heart of the Sundarbans.