The cult of Saivism has found expression in Bihar in
a large number of Shiva temples and particularly on
the districts bordering Nepal. North Bihar districts,
namely, Champaran, Saran, Muzaffarpur, Darbhanga and
Saharsa have got quite a few Shiva temples.
The influence of Nepal, where Saivism has a very great
holds, is clearly one of the reason why there are so
many Shiva temples in these boarder districts. Many
of these Shiva temples are visited by thousands of pilgrims
The Singheshwar temple at the village Singheshwar in
Saharsa district is one of the ancient Shiva temples
in Bihar. It is visited by lakhs of pilgrims in the
course of a year although it is not very easily accessible
from the other parts of Bihar.
The Kosi River has ravaged the district of Saharsa
for decades. Saharsa has a railway connection with Mansi
on the Sonepur-Katihar railway line of the North- Eastern
Railway now, but a decade back the railway line was
permanently breached at quite a few places.
Even now the nearest railway station for Singheshwar
is Madhipura about 8 miles away. The road connecting
Madhipura to Saharsa is still extremely bad and passenger
buses can negotiate it only if fair weather. On all-important
roads there are quite a few culverts which have not
The standard of health in the area has been extremely
poor till recently due to the constant, unpredictably
flood ravages of the Kosi. Kala-azar, malaria, blackwater
fever, hookworm, dysentery, skin diseases, was some
of the scourges, which took a heavy toll every year.
The Kosi currents, they say, would poison anything
that would be touched. Fertile plains yielding good
crops were covered with sand by the change of current
of the Kosi. Mango orchards literally dried up after
the Kosi water inundated them.