| The statue in Bhagalpur. Picture by Amit Kumar |
A family from Nagaland has gifted a 31ft statue of the 12th Jain Tirthankar, Lord Vasupujya, to a temple in Nathnagar.
The statue, one of the tallest in eastern India, was installed at Champapur Digambar Jain Siddhakshatra — a temple 8km west of Bhagalpur — on Sunday.
The statue of Lord Vasupujya, the 12th Jain Tirthankar, is carved out of a single piece of granite brought from Bangalore in June 2012.
Sculptors from Rajasthan worked on the statue at the temple complex in Nathnagar for a year-and-a-half before unveiling it for the public. Taking in account the base, the statue reaches a height of 40 feet.
The statue was installed amid rituals on January 5.
Champapur Digambar Jain Siddhakshatra, Nathnagar, has been gifted the one-of-a-kind granite statue by the family of businessman Binod Kumar in Dimapur, Nagaland. It was the wish of Sona Devi, Binod Kumar’s wife, to donate a statue to the temple.
Sona Devi, who was born in Bhagalpur, however, did not live to see her wish fulfilled as she died in 2012. Her family — husband, two sons and two daughters — have now completed her last wish.
Binod, 57, said: “The promise I made to my wife has been kept. We are very pleased to see the statue of Lord Vasupujya here. We hope pilgrims who visit this temple would also be happy to see it.”
Dewas Sethi, Binod’s son, said: “It was my mother’s dream to install the statue here. Now complete, it stands on an open lotus. Twenty sculptors from Rajasthan led by Surendar Kumar and Mithalal completed the work recently.”
He added: “We spent around Rs 30 lakh to complete the statue. While it was sculpted on the temple complex, we had to arrange for two industrial cranes (brought from Durgapur in Bengal) to install it on the platform. Our whole family — my father, brother Anand Sethi and sisters Chandni and Shiwangi — had been camping in Bhagalpur for the installation of the statue.”
Jain pilgrims from all over the country visit Champapur Digambar Jain Siddhakshatra in Nathnagar every year. Now, the 31ft statue would greet them.