The largest Dwarapala sculpture - 1000 year old unearthed in Telangana

biggest Vaishnava Dwarapala found in paddy fields at Malyala village of Siddipet dist.

The biggest Vaishnava Dwarapala found in january 2023 inthe  paddy fields at Malyala village of Siddipet district of Telangana. The sculpture of Vijaya, the doorkeeper of Vishnu, is the biggest one reported so far from Telangana..

A Dvarapala or Dvarapalaka (Sanskrit, "door guard") is a door or gate guardian. Every Hindu temple dedicated to Vishnu, Shiva and Shakti  has a pair of guards on either side of the entrance gopura and also sanctum. In many temples the guards traditionally appear in pairs and one can see  a pair of Dwarapalas at several levels -tiers on the gopura with diminishing size.  He is  often portrayed as a warrior or fearsome giant with curved gently protruding  canine teeth and  usually armed with a weapon - the most common being the gada (mace).

Dharmapalas of Thanjavur big temple.

The sculpture of the  guard of the temple entrance or sanctum is made of granite rock and is about  six feet above the ground and three feet below with a thickness of nine inches. The discovery of a huge 'dwarapala'  with his regular regalia surprised the experts from the archaeology department. The Dwarapala  appears with an elongated crown kirita on  the head, several ornaments on the body, besides he is armed with  'gada' and Suchi mudra in the original two hands and 'Shanku' and ' and 'Chakra' in the additional two hand

As for dating,  experts believe it is from the period slightly later than the Rashtrakuta and early Kalyana Chalukyan period.  God Vishnu's gatekeepers are jaya and Vijaya and the sculpture of Vijaya  is said to be  bigger than the ones of the Kakatiya period unearthed at Ghanpur in former Warangal district.

The officials from ASI said that Pleach India Foundation, a non-profit organisation, is  protecting and promoting local heritage. he officials  requested  the villagers to shift the idol and place it on a pedestal at an appropriate place in the village under proper labelling with details on its historical significance and iconography for the benefit of research scholars and future generations.


Damage of heritage Dwarapala sculpture: 

7th century Dwarapalaka sculptures on display Chennai museum.

Above image:  In 2016 a 1,000-year-old Dwarapala idol was damaged and  reduced to pieces at Ratham Centre in the One Town area, Vijayawada. This happened due carelessness on the part of museum officials or contractors involved  during  city beautification drive taken up by local authorities. This mishap that could have been avoided  had raised raising serious concern among  archaeologists and heritage lovers.   The broken idol was recovered from the Eluru Canal in 1844.  The idol first  recovered from the Eluru Canal in 1844. was kept on a pedestal  at the Ratham Centre near Brahmin Street in the One Town area.  In 1938. the  two life-size granite sculptures of Dwarapalakas were  shifted to the Madras Govt. Museum during the colonial period. The sculptures are from the  era of the founder of  Vengi Chalukya dynasty.. When renovation was on at Sri  Andal temple, Srivilliputhur of Tamil nadu several years ago, cleaning of several sculptures were done done by sand blasting and in the process several images mildly damaged and very much affected was their stunning beauty. ...................