Welioya Kumbhakarna Gala Archaeological Ruins

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The ancient Kiriibban Wewa Reservoir can be found 5 km from Welioya on the Mullaitivu road. The rock known as Kumbakarna Gala (Tamil: Kumbakarnamalai) is located in front of the lake at a distance of about 500 meters from Kiriibban Reservoir.

According to local beliefs, this rock is the abode of the Giant Kumbhakarna. Kumbhakarna is Ravana’s brother. According to some legends, the deity Ayyanayake (අයියනායක), who is worshipped as the deity of the Vanni Hatpattu from above Deduru Oya in the North Central Province to Jaffna is Giant Kumbakarna.

Kumbhakarnagala Rock has been designated as an archaeological site by the Department of Archaeology. The drip ledge cave found at the site has two parts. In the courtyard of the cave, nine stone pillars were reported by historian Medhananda Thero. However, only four stone pillars are visible today. Other stone pillars and bricks had been used by the army to build camps during the war with the LTTE Terrorists. A beautifully designed foundation stone is broken in two. It is 145 cm long, 40 cm wide and 15 cm thick. Pottery remains, tiles and brick fragments are common on the surface of the area.

The route to the Kumbhakarna Gala passes through a narrow passage flanked by two cliffs. The platform supporting the now-ruined stupa is perched atop a boulder, surrounded by scattered stone fragments. Due to repeated excavations by treasure hunters, the stupa has been reduced to remnants of stone, bricks, and debris. Many bricks and fragments, discarded during these activities, are scattered at the base of the hill (Medhānanda,2005).

A previous account mentions the existence of paintings on the interior walls, but there is no trace of them today. The pond situated to the Northeast is presently filled with mud, and only a limited amount of water remains. Remnants of a stairway leading to the summit of the rock are still visible. Although a prior report noted the presence of two fragments of an inscription and a Buddha image at this location, no evidence of these items can be found at present. (Medhānanda,2005).

References

  • (2014). Proposed Kivul Oya Reservoir Project. EIA FINAL Report. Colombo: Mahaweli Authority of Sri Lanka, pp.228-231.
  • Medhānanda, E., (2005). The Sinhala Buddhist heritage in the East and the North of Shri [i.e. Sri] Lanka. 1st ed. Colombo: Dayawansa Jayakody & Co. , pp.193-194.
  • Archaeologysl.maps.arcgis.com. (2020). Web GIS Portal – Web GIS Unit. [online] Available at: <https://archaeologysl.maps.arcgis.com/home/index.html> [Accessed 30 September 2020].

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Driving Directions of Welioya Kumbhakarna Gala Archaeological Ruins

From Padaviya to Welioya Kumbhakarna Gala Archaeological Ruins
Via: Valioya
Total distance : 24 km
Duration : 35 minutes
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