The Temple of the Shattered Head of Shri Ganesh – Patal Bhubaneswar Cave Temple – Pithoragarh Gangolihat – Uttarakhand
90 feet deep and 160 meters long cave or say number of caves. It is believed that Ganapati’s head, which was first human head, even today resides here. According to legends King of Ayodhya descendant of sun King Rituparna in Treta Yoga was the first human to reach the cave of Patal Bhubaneswar. Once King Nal, friend of King Rituparna, requested to help him in hiding. Rituparna took him to the forests of the Himalayas and asked him to hide there.
When he came back leaving the king’s Nal, he saw a very beautiful deer, even after lot of efforts Rituparna was not able to catch the deer. Tired king started resting under a tree and feel asleep. When King Rituparna woke up he found himself near a cave. After investigating he went inside and found Sheshnag in inside the cave. Inside the cave Rituparna saw Lord Shiva and the other 33 gods and goddesses. In the Dwapar era, Pandavas visited Shiva in Patal Bhubaneswar cave and in Kaliyug, Jagat Guru Shankaracharya made his debut in Patal Bhubaneswar Cave in 722 AD and he established Shivalinga of Copper here. It is believed that in anger when Shankar ji had beheaded Ganapati’s head from the torso and kept the head in Bhubaneswar cave while an elephant head was placed on the body.
In Pithoragarh, Uttarakhand, there is a village, 14 kilometers from Gangolihat, Bhubaneswar. It is very difficult to reach the Patal Bhubaneswar cave. The Patal Bhubaneswar cave is 90 feet deep and 160 meters long, due to the difficulties of going to the cave many devotees go back without doing darshan. But according to the Puranas, there is no place other than Patal Bhaineshwar, where one can visit and it’s equal to visit of char dhamms.