What the artisans from the Vijaynagar empire have attempted at Tadipatri is to been seen to be believed. Literally I had to reverse my vehicle and have an argument with my wife, who was reluctant that I should see these temples at any cost. It was worth the disagreement and at the end of the day she was happy that my instincts worked this time around for a change. We were delayed on reaching our sweet home by 1 hour but it was worth it.
LOCATION : Tadpatri is just 50 odd kms from Ananthpur on NH7 with a deviation from the town. But we approached this destination after visiting Gooty, Alampur, Ketavaram, Srisailam, Mahanandi, Yaganti, Belum and Tadpatri was a bonus on the return journey. Just imagine our luck we completed the trip despite the Petroleum Strike called by IOC Officers. This can reveal the dates of our travel for inquisitive readers.
HISTORY : Many a historians consider the two temples of Tadipatri as symbol of an era where artisans have perfected their skills in sculpting. Tiruvenkataswami temple is now known as Chintalaraya temple probably after Krishnadevaraya. This is the primary reason for scenes to be depicted from Mahabharat on the façade of the temple gopurams and citadel. However the balance of the gopuram was dislodged when a powerful lightening struck in 1851 AD due to the absence of earthing or grounding in the structure. The credit for building this temple goes to one Ramalinga Nayudu, a local feudatory of the Vijaynagar Empire.
Chintalraya temple has been resurrected by ASI considering the importance retaining the legacy of such fine piece of sculpting from Vijaynagar era. The Asthana Mantap is fine ornamented as it were with fine sculptures. It stands tall with 40 moulded pillars. The granite are in hues of grayish black. Some of the scenes depicted are King Dasartha performing Ashwamedha yagna, Hanuman talking to Ravana, Sita entering flames, Lord Krishna dancing on the legendary serpent are all depicting of the epics.
The Padmavathi Mantap was generally used as marriage hall for solemnizing marriages in ancient times. This temple can be compared to Virupaksha temple in Hampi but unfortunately the gopuram has collapsed due to elements of nature.
Bugga Ramalinga temple was never completed by the Thimmappa Nayudu due to invasion. Nevertheless Nature too conspired against this edifice by flooding in 1851 AD. The flood waters immersed the temple with waters from river Pennar and the southern tower collapsed under the weak foundation laid.
Bugga means a water spring in Telugu, due to which the temple name was christened as Bugga Ramalingeswara temple. The Linga on the temple premise is perennially fed by the spring.
The temple is built in typical Dravidian style with central columns supporting the roof and the pillars around providing the balance for the entire edifice. The Lion motif on some pillars add to the majestic appeal to the temple. The inscriptions speak of grants made by Achyutraya, Govindayya and Thimmaraya for maintainence and day to day expense of the temple.
Overall the visit to Tadipatri, which was originally a palm growing region due to which the name stuck is literally experiencing the finesse of Vijaynagar architecture. Check out the metaphor painting in black and white at Tadipatri temples.