Mangaluru: Youths join hands to restore ancient Jain statue | Mangaluru News – Times of India

MANGALURU: Religious leaders from the Jain community will soon finalise a place for the protection of an ancient Jain statue that was recently restored by the members of Karkala Jain Brigade (KJB).
The community members, under the guidance of Rajaguru Dhyanayogi Swasti Sri Lalithakeerthi Bhattaraka Pattacharyavarya Maha Swami of Jain Mutt (Karkala) and Swasti Sri Bhattaraka Charukeerthi Panditacharyavarya Mahaswami of Sri Digambar Jain Mutt (Moodbidri) and Dharmastala Dharmadhikari D Veerendra Heggade, are expected to finalise the proposal and shift the statue. The 13-foot statue will be relocated from its current location at Mangalpade in Karkala to a suitable place.
Vikyath Jain, an advocate from Mangaluru and a member of KJB working for the protection of temples, told TOI that the photos of some youth, wearing shoes and sitting on the statue, had gone viral in the first week of September. Besides sharing the photos on social media, the community members sought protection for the statue.
“After visiting the place, our team decided to restore the statue with the support of senior advocate M K Vijay Kumar and SCDCC Bank chairman M N Rajendra Kumar. We reached out to Karkala tahsildar Purandhar Hegde and other departments concerned seeking help. We also complained to Karkala town police, seeking protection of the statue. In the meantime, we cleaned the statue and the place around it, fenced the area and planted saplings. We have also put up a signboard, warning people of strict action if found touching the idol or trespassing the area. Moodbidri Jain Mutt Swami visited the place,” he said.
Shedding light on the history of the statue, Vikyath said senior community members from the region are aware of its presence there. “It is believed that a Delhi-based watch company had got this statue sculpted by Renjala Gopalakrishna Shenoy nearly four decades ago. It was to be installed at Ahinsa Sthal (Delhi). However before the idol was sculpted, a team visited and reportedly decided against taking it to Delhi. Since then, the statue has been there at an interior place. It grabbed the attention of Jains from across the country after religious sentiments were hurt. Soon, the land will be identified and the statue will be shifted,” he explained.

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Sagar Biswas

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