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7th Century Mahishasura Mardini statue found in Telangana village

The statue of Mahishasura Mardini is seen as using a spear to kill the demon while tramping his head with her leg

The members of Kotha Telangana Charitra Brindam, a group of amateur archaeologists came across a rare sculpture of Mahishasura Mardini at Arepally village in Telangana’s Siddipet district.

The statue of the Goddess was kept inside a local Venkateswara temple.

Sharing details with India Narrative about the sculpture, Sriramoju Haragopal, Convenor KTCB said: “This stone sculpture measures 18x10x2 cm in height, width and thickness and was found inside the local Venkateswara temple. The statue is a rare one and depicts the Goddess with four hands. While the right hand on the back is holding a chakra, the left back hand has a conch. With her front left hand, she is holding the tail of Mahishasura, the demon and in her front right hand she has a spear with which is piercing his body. Standing on her left leg, she is seen using her right one to trample the demon’s head.”

When asked to which period the sculpture belongs to, he said it was probably from the early Chalukyan period in 7th Century.  “She is bereft of head gear and has minimum ornaments on her body and this suggests the period,” Haragopal told India Narrative.

He further said that it was the first sculpture of Mahishasura Mardini belonging to the Badami Chalukyan era reported from Telangana so far.

Jain Chaumukh
The members of Kotha Telangana Charitra Brindam also found a Jain Chaumukh during their study of the Mahishasura Mardini sculpture

The team which besides Haragopal included Dr. E. Sivanagireddy, S. Jaikishan, Mohammad Naseeruddin, Ahobilam Karunakar and Vemuganti Murali Krishna also examined the 9th Century CE Jain Chaumukh which was coated with colours and placed outside the Venkateswara temple.

Incidentally, in an earlier excavation a 5th Century Mahishasura Mardini was unearthed while another one was found at Panagal recently by Dr. Sivanagireddy and Suryakumar.