Padutirupathi Temple




Sri Venkataramana Temple, Karkala, also known as Padutirupathi, is a temple in Karnataka, India. It was built by Goud Saraswat Brahmins of Karkala and was installed on April 25, 1537.
This shrine lies to the west of Tirupati while original shrine is in the east. The name itself signifies its meaning. Padu means ‘West’ in Kannada and Tirupathi means Tirumala temple.
This ancient temple of Karkala, Karnataka, India was built by Goud Saraswat Brahmins of Karkala. They migrated from Goa after the Portuguese invaded it. They could not suffer their tortures. So they migrated to places like Karnataka and Kerala, where they brought all their household items.
This temple has a history dating from about the 14th century when the Jain Bhairarasa Odeyars ruled Karkala and surrounding places. The Gaud Saraswat Brahmins were given land by the Jain Odeyars so that these people can lead a happy life. They also gave them lands for agriculture as these Brahmins had it as an occupation. The priests of this community namely Joishys, Puraniks and Tantris were the main people who had an existence from 14th century. The exact date of installation of this temple is still unknown as during that time there were no written materials or documents.
The main attraction of this temple was its installation ceremony. The Gaud Saraswat Brahmins (GSBs) came to Karnataka in search of place food and shelter. They paid a visit to all the places along the coastline. Some of them settled in Karwar, Ankola, Kumta, Bhatkal, Shirali and so on. Few of them went to Kerala side and settled in Ernakulam, Cochin, Manjeshwar etc. Rest of the others went to Udupi and Dakshina Kannada (which was previously under Mysore State). These GSBs came and settled in Pandya Nagari of Jains between 1400 AD and 1450 AD (now been called as Karkala). They brought with them all their articles and household items which included idol of Lord Venkataramana. The first GSB to enter Karkala was Soire Prabhu whose great grandson is K. Ramesh Prabhu the present trustee of the temple. They are also called as the first citizen of Karkala. One more family who migrated from Goa along with Prabhu’s were the Soma Sharmas. He was a priest in Tirupathi Temple. Prabhus started their life in Karkala as usual how they used to live in Goa with all the rites and rituals. Their priests joined them.

Some of the GSBs came to this place wandering from place to place for shelter and food. They met the Jain kings and they told them about Prabhus, Sharmas and GSB priests. They gave these people permission to stay with them. One fine day all these GSBs came to Jain King Immadi Bhairava, asking for a land to build a temple for Lord Sree Venkataramana in 1450 AD. The Jain king happily gave them the land for the very same purpose with some black stones which were prevalent in the area. This shows that the Jains patronised other religions. The land which they gave to the GSBs was occupied by a lady of some Mutt (religious institution for learning Vedas and Puranas). The lady heeded to the people and Jains only one condition thata

“There are four powerful Ganas [Lord Shiva’s servants] who should be worshipped and given sacrifices of coconuts, green pumpkins, Turmeric and so on; unless they would get angry. Also an yearly sacrifice should be performed as no unholy things may happen in and around here.”

The Gaud Saraswat Brahmins and the Jain king openly said yes to lady, and the temple was built. Initially a huge platform was built and four pillars were made to stand in the corners. Entangled coconut leaves were made as a roof. The idol was installed inside and prayed for the betterment of people. The compound wall was in its progress for building up the blocks. Soma Sharma returned to Karkala from Tirupathi with another idol of Lord Sree Venkataramana which was given to him by the Tirumala priests at the end of the 14th century. He installed this idol with the previously installed idol of Lord Venkataramana in the newly built stone platform.

During 1500 AD, some dacoits attacked Karkala and started stealing all the gold and silver ornaments and idols. Karkala GSBs got scared about these bad events. They made up their mind and took all their precious articles with the two idols and ran away to some other place. They asked the Jain kings to protect their area. The king promised them and gave 100% moral support. Karkala GSBs reached an area called Mulki where threw all the materials they had with them in a well. In Karkala there was a huge fight going on between Jain rulers and the dacoits. At last the dacoits had to run away from Karkala since they had been defeated. As the happenings cooled down Karkala GSBs returned to the well and tried to retrieved all the idols and articles. But they could not retrieve the idol which Soma Sharma had brought with him. They got depressed and returned to Karkala. One morning, a Mulki person was passing near the well and found something shining. He went down and tried to look at it. It was the same idol the Karkala people were searching for. He thought Lord must have made his mind to stay in Mulki, so he took it and made a plan install it in Sree Veera Vittal Temple of Mulki established by Soira Vittal Bhat.

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