Know your neighbourhood - 20: Places around HAL Road

Overview: Domlur, a flourishing village during the Cholas, is now in the hub of modern Bangalore. With MG Road, Indiranagar, HAL airport road in the vicinity, this is one of the most popular areas of Bangalore. Chokkanatheshwara temple in Domlur is one of the oldest temples in Bangalore, built in the 10th century. According to the inscriptions found in this temple, Domlur is referred to as ‘Tombalur’ talking about grants offered to the temple. Some records mention the name of the place as 'Desi Mannika Pattnam'. The temple was initially built by the Cholas and later renovated by the Hoysalas and Vijayanagara rulers. One inscription from 1440 CE mentions about the tolls from Sondekoppa village being granted to this temple. Two more earlier inscriptions indicate grants from Karadihalli and Sunkenahalli (Hanumanthanagar). There is one Anjaneyaswamy temple a few metres from the Chokkanathaswamy temple, dating back to the Vijayanagara times. It is believed that the head of Anjaneya directly coincides with the feet level of the Chokkanatha's image. There are some Atmabali stones in front of the Chokkanatha temple with persons shown stabbing their neck with a dagger. According to an inscription near the stones, there was a 1266 CE Tripurantaka temple which no longer can be seen now.

Chokkanathaswamy temple, Domlur
Inscription at Domlur
Herostones at Domlur

Anjaneya temple, Domlur

Belur: Today's National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL) has been built over an ancient village called Belur. Within the NAL premises is an ancient Shiva temple, renovated by Dharmasthala Trust. The temple complex has temples dedicated to Someshwara, Parvati and Ganesha.

Someshwara temple complex, Belur
Inscription at Someshwara temple, Belur

Indiranagar was formed as a BDA layout in the 1980s as a part of city’s expansion on the eastern suburbs. With all modern facilities such as shopping malls, big brands, restaurants and Metro connectivity, Indiranagar boasts of a micro city in its own. As on April 2014, Indiranagar 100 feet road has overtaken Hauz Khas of Delhi and Kolkata’s Park Street as the hottest Food & Beverages (F&B) hub in India, with around 87 restaurants which includes all Indian and World cuisine. Caring for some lung space, city’s experimentation with vertical gardens began in Indiranagar at CMH Park at the junction of CMH Road and 100 feet road. The inner ring road links Indiranagar with Koramangala cutting through the HAL airport road. Indiranagar also boasts of rich tree lined boulevards since last few decades which made it a favourite place for HAL employees to reside.


Also nearby is the BEML coach factory, incorporated in 1965, where railway coaches are rolled out including Namma Metro, Delhi and Jaipur Metro.
Leela Palace hotel, the only 5-star business hotel in Bangalore until mid 2000s, is not far from Domlur. It stands on the HAL airport road. It was the most sought after hotel for businesses due to its proximity to HAL airport when it was a commercial airport. Other prominent landmarks on the HAL road are The Manipal Hospital (founded in 1991) and the Shiva temple. The Shiva temple was built by Ravi Melwani in 1995, known for his retail stores like Kids Kemp on KG Road and Big Kids Kemp on MG Road. It is a 65 feet tall statue of Lord Shiva with other Jyotirlingas inside the temple, attracting a big number of tourists.

Tracks leading to BEML

Marathahalli, a bustling corridor to the IT hub of Whitefield today, is a very old village, dating back to the times of the Vijayanagara kingdom. Inscriptions at Marathahalli date back to 1508 and mentions about the rule of Veeranarasimha Raya in Vijayanagar Kingdom. In the last century, the Dakshina Pinakini river used to flow through Marathahalli village. A leisurely stroll down the streets of Marathahalli takes us to the old village which is centered around the old Someshwara temple, though renovated now. Ancient inscription written in Old Kannada has also been discovered near the temple belonging to the Vijayanagara kings. So the areas of Marathahalli, Doddanekundi, Vibhutipura, Mahadevapura all share a rich history. Also, being close to the HAL airport, development activities began here early in the 1990s. Factory outlets sprung up making it a paradise for shoppers. Since the end of 2010, Marathahalli, along with the neighbouring village of Doddanekundi, has become one of the most cosmopolitan areas of Bengaluru. Innovative Multiplex was the first multiplex in Bangalore, operational since 2006.

Old board at Marathahalli village
Someshwara temple and inscriptions, Marathahalli

Vijayanagara era Shiva temple, Munekolala

HAL Heritage Centre and Aerospace Museum: HAL established India’s first aerospace museum in 2001 showcasing Indian history of aircrafts, helicopters, engines and flight simulators and the growth of Indian aviation industry.

HAL museum

Doddanekundi:Another village adjacent to Marathahalli is Doddanekundi, where incriptions in Tamil dating to 1304 during the rule of the Hoysala king Veera Ballala-II were found. The village was called Nerkundi according to one inscription. The Hoysala king granted the revenue from the village towards Shivagange temple.

Inscriptions and Rama temple, Doddanekundi

Vibhutipura: A village near Marathahalli, is home to the oldest Veerashaiva Mathas in Bangalore, which houses a Hoysala temple dedicated to Veerabhadraswamy. The temple also has 1187 CE inscriptions on a stone tablet which mentions about the rule of Veera Ballala II. This inscription was installed by one Periyapillai and mentions describes the name of the village Vachidevarapura and how this village was established after clearing the jungles and setting up agricultural fields and wet lands. Anyone working against this would be commiting a sin equivalent to killing of a brown cow on the banks of the river Ganga. Vibhutipura Lake is also popular for attracting several migratory birds.

Veerabhadraswamy temple and inscriptions, Vibhutipura

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