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Fuchsite - Nathdwara Temple of Meera Bai, Rajasthan, India

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I was camping near Nathdwara about 60 km away from Udaipur City in Rajasthan.


Nathdwara is the place of famous temple of Meera Bai who was a devotee of Lord Krishna and a legendary figure. She wrote many bhajans praising Lord Krishna in her own style. Born in early 16th century, Meerabai belonged to the royal family of Mewar. She renounced the luxuries of royal life and became an ardent devotee of lord Krishna and started living at this place. I visited the temple observing every minute architecture and the idols that were kept inside the temple.

Being a geologist, my natural inquisitiveness had drawn me to study the intricate mineralogical art works on the temple.

Strangely enough, I saw that some of the idols were ornamented with emerald green coloured necklace, and further these unique emerald green minerals were engraved on the walls of the temple. It glittered and gave a pleasant atmosphere within the temple even surpassing the glamour of the diamond eye in the original idol of Lord Krishna.

I was engaged in the geological work around this place of Nathdwara. The area was a peneplained domain of granite gneissic rocks and more than 3000 million years old. Interestingly, within this gneissic rock a lot of hillocks of quartz-fuchsite bands show the effect of fold movement synchronous to the changes in the direction of gneissic band. They form hillocks of beautiful semicircular bands. This quartz-fuchsite rock can be literally traced within the gneissic rock. I used to enjoy working around this hillock of fuchsite. It was a strange feeling of an unknown attraction of the mineral fuchsite. I used to hammer the rock and tried to get a lump of pure fuchsite. The mineral had an attractive emerald green colour with flaky crystal habit. In fact, the mineral was a chrome muscovite. Its green colour was due to chromium within its lattice structure. One day at about 25 km south of Nathdwara, I was surveying the area and was following a foot track to reach a small mound, marked in the survey of India's toposheet.


I could locate that small hillock over which a group of small local children were playing and a group of people were merrily observing them. I climbed up that small hill and was eager to examine the rocks. I took out my hammer and was about to hit, when the people around came running to me. They started telling not to break the rock there. So I stopped breaking but to my utter dismay I could see the entire slope of the adjacent hill. Yes! the same deep emerald green colour was glittering all around the hill slope. A nice and pleasant feeling prevailed over there. I suddenly became aware that the people around were observing my speechless astounding moment with their innocent smiles.

Some one told in their language "Sahab this hill is a sacred one, our ancestors came and settled here. We came to know from one generation to another that this hill is a sacred one. Do you not see that the surroundings are full of joy and happiness! We are here since 500 years when our beloved mother Meera bai built the famous Nathdwara temple!" I could really feel the influence of emerald green coloured fuchsite a deep mantle mineral everywhere. I handed over the hammer to my field guide and started observing the children playing over there.

Contributing Author: The author, Mr. Asimendu Bandopadhyay, uses his free time in writing. He has developed a writing style revealing the bondage of nature and the life. He wants to share & communicate those events of his own with the readers for their valuable feelings and interactions. The author was working as a Director in Geological Survey of India in the last phase of his service career. In his younger days worked in various field of geology with background of foreign training in United Kingdom under United Nations Development Programme Scheme in Marine Exploration. He gathered vast experience both in land and Ocean. Active participation as Chief Scientist in as many as 15 different geological cruises in the Bay of Bengal is in his credit. He took part in search of Fe-Mn nodules cruising 45 days at a stretch in sea in the Indian Ocean in Skandy Surveyor, a Norwegian Research Vessel. Published scientific papers in national and international journals. Besides scientific milieu, came across many human-inhuman experiences. Vast field of Rajasthan, the place of desert and his initial placement in the job ended in the deep sea through majestic happenings covering human feelings and scientific search.

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