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Kaidala: Last work of Amarashilpi Jakanacharya

city kemp Kaidala. Channakeshava temple city kemp Kaidala. Lord Vishnu adorned on temple pillars city kemp Lord Channakeshava idol. The last sculpture of Jakanacharya when he was 86 year old city kemp.Amarashilpi Jakanacharya – the master sculptor, builder, architect & engineer all rolled in one was born in an non-descriptive small hamlet of a not so village called Kridapura now called Kaidala. It is geographically located behind Gudlur village on the Tumkur – Kunigal road, 9 kilometres away from Tumkur. It’s sad that this place is not in the tourist circuit of  travellers & tourists. Tumkur is 70 kms from Bangalore (Bengaluru) Karnataka, India.
Jakanacharya was a 12 century prodigy. In the era of the local chieftain Nripa Haya, this bright man lived a normal life. In time he got married and was settling down to a mundane married family life. But, his thoughts troubled him . . . his creative mind provoked him to be something than nothing. He set upon a journey of self-discovery.
His first stop and discovery was at the Somanathpura near Mysore, Channakeshava temple.  It has his contribution. From here he was taken to contribute his amazing talented workmanship at Belur & Halebidu temple complexes for the Kalyani Chalukya & Hoysala kings. The ruling king Vishnuvardana, queen Shantala and his lineage encouraged him and saw his major contribution. During the peak of his career he was confronted by a young sculpture about a flaw in one of the sculpture. Challenging this, Jakanacharya vowed to cut-off his right hand if found right.
Tales told have it that he cuts-off his right hand as in the belly of the disputed statue emerges a frog living in a pocket of water. This statue becomes impure to worship. Later he discovers the young man to be his own son, known as Dankanayacharya. This incident brings father and son together and the family reunites together.
During the same time Jakanacharya gets a vision that he should build a Channakeshava temple. This vision pushes him to build the now famous temple at his hometown Kridapura. His son Dakanacharaya joins him in his endeavour along with the support of the local chieftain Nripa Haya. Jakanacharya works on this last sculpture in his life at the age of 86 with his left hand on a beautiful black stone taller than a human being with details and intricacies – supposedly his best work in his lifetime. The beautiful black stone was gifted by the Hoysala king Vishnuvardana. This beautiful stone was transported on an elephant from Belur-Halebidu. Jakanacharya’s son and his dedicated followers complete the temple complex in the Dravidian -Hoysala style of architecture and sculpture. This temple of Channakeshava (Vishnu) neighbours the Gangadeshvara temple. It is said that even the Gods were so happy with Jakanacharya’s work that they bestowed him his right hand. That’s why this place got its name as ‘Kaidala’. Kai in Kannada means hand.
Kaidala is a two-temple town and famous for the last work of Amarashilpi Jakanacharya.There’s nothing more to see. It’s best this place be clubbed with the tourist map of Tumkur map of 65 places one could vist. The hungry tourist devours more. All travelling comforts end at Tumkur. Kaidala would take 1 – 2 hours from your schedule depending on the nature of your pursuit. It was a photographers delight which took me here. The temple priest was kind and co-operative in telling me stories associated with the place  and also letting me take photographs.
The Kannada & Telugu film industry has produced movie’s on the life and times of Amarashilpi Jakanacharya. The Kannada movie was the first colour movie of the times in 1964. The Karnataka state government has introduced Jakanacharya awards to honour talented sculptors & craftsman to celebrate the legendary person of the 12th century. Jakanacharya’s  romance, love and his dedication to art can be seen here – his last testimony!

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