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Jain sculptures of Vedic times found in Telangana

    Historian Reddy Ratnakar Reddy with sculptures belonging to Jain Thirthankaras at Siddenki village.

    Jangaon (Telangana), December 18, 2016: Sculptures belonging to Jain Thirthankaras of the Vedic period have been discovered at Siddenki village 10 km from the district headquarters and just 3 km away from the famous Kolanukapaka temple.

    Local historian Ratnakar Reddy who brought these sculptures to light observed that these sculptures represented the first Tirthankara Rishabhanatha of Vedic period, 23rd Tirthankara Parshvanatha and 24th Tirthankara of 599-527 BC.
    According to Jainism, a Tirthankara is the one who preaches the dharma or the righteous path. They were considered wise and equal to God.

    The sculptures were found on a hillock called ‘Bommala Gutta and `Siddhula Gutta’ by the locals. Some inscriptions were also found on the hillock. A water pond can also be found inside the hillock.

    On the outskirts of Siddenki and Ellamla villages, there is a Jain Yaksha Temple, which is in a dilapidated condition after treasure hunters destroyed it. Several burial chambers belonging to megalithic age can also be seen in the area.

    According to local lore, Jain pilgrims used to visit Kolanpaka via Siddenki and Ellamla villages. Details of who carved these sculptures are not known. Mr Ratnakar Reddy said if the scripture found in the area can be translated, more information could be brought to light.

    “The presence of these sculptures indicates the ancient practice of Jainism in Jangaon district. These sculptures of Tirthankaras were in an abandoned state. I along with some of my friends cleaned the area and applied ‘chandanam’ to the carvings. The archaeology department must help in promoting the presence of these sculptures in the village. If road connectivity is developed, tourists who visit the Kolanupaka temple can visit this place too,” he said. – News & Image Courtesy: Deccan Chronicle

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