miscellany

Hidden treasure on a river bank

miscellany

River Hemavathi, which is regarded as the lifeline of Hassan and Mandya districts, has made its environs beautiful in many places. Hemagiri, located in Krishnarajapete taluk of the Mandya district, is one such place.

River Hemavathi serenely flows in Hemagiri. On the left side of the river bank is an incessant strip of attractive and striking foliage. The backdrop of lush green foliage and hills along with the River Hemavati flowing presents a natural scenary. Lush green betel, coconut plantations and verdant paddy fields make either banks of the river an eye-soothing sight. The view of the wide placid river flowing amidst these fields is mesmerising. 

Hemavati flows west at Hemagiri. A small anecut has been constructed here to water the fields. The overflowing water on this barrage made this place more attractive. The beautiful waterfall made by the overflow of check dam of about 500 metres, built across the river, beckons nature enthusiasts from near and far. The water overflowing on the check dam makes a sparkling silver screen of 20 feet high waterfall. 

A power generation station built under the waterfall causes a considerable quantity of water to flow in the adjacent canal. Therefore the waterfall in its full splendour is available only during the monsoon. But the relatively small waterfall is equally delightful. Large rocks, ever green islands, chirping birds, constant cool breeze and rustic life have made this a rather lively place. This check dam, built across the river for storage, irrigation and agricultural purposes has enriched the place. 

By the end of September, migratory birds build an avian world. These nesting birds procreate and fly out of Hemagiri in the monsoons. White ibis are widely spotted here, Spoonbill, painted stork, open bills and pelicans can also be seen. 

An ancient Kalyana Venkataramanaswamy Temple is situated atop the hill close to the river bank. It is believed that saint Bhrigu Mahrashi performed penance at this holy place. Devotees visit the temple from different parts of South India throughout the year. When one climbs the steep stairs amidst the hill en route to the temple, one gets a bird’s eye view of the surrounding places. This place offers a perfect setting for a relaxing and memorable experience.

The cattle fair and chariot processions during Sankranthi are popular events here. The cattle fair is considered one of the biggest fairs across Karnataka. Farmers from north Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh gather here to buy and sell their cattle. Hemagiri has all the essentials of an ideal tourist destination. Lack of infrastructure and inadequate information has kept Hemagiri hidden from travellers. The town can be reached by taking a left turn at Hemavathi circle in Krishnarajapete towards Bandihole, Chandgonahalli, and travelling 9 km on a diversion path towards Bellibetta. 

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