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Arun Yogiraj: The Master Sculptor Behind Ram Lalla's Idol

Arun Yogiraj The Master Sculptor Behind Ram Lalla's Idol

Arun Yogiraj, a renowned sculptor from Mysore, has etched his name in history by sculpting the idol of Ram Lalla, the presiding deity of the Ayodhya Ram Mandir. Arun’s exceptional craftsmanship has garnered much appreciation and praise, making him a household name in sculpture. Shri Narendra Modi Ji honors him for his amazing craftsmanship. He gifted a two-foot-tall Subhash Chandra Bose idol to our PM. It is how people got to know him.

Arun Yogiraj- Whose Idol of Ram Lalla is Selected for Ram Mandir in Ayodhya

Born and raised in Mysore, Arun Yogiraj inherited his passion for sculpting from his father, a skilled sculptor. His five generations are famous sculptor masters from Mysore. Arun began learning the art form at a tender age and quickly displayed his talent and dedication. Through years of practice and honing his skills, Arun gained recognition for his remarkable ability to breathe life into stone. He has done his masters in MBA and has worked in private firms. But he chose his carving skills as a career in 2008.

About Arun Yogiraj:

  • Born in: 1983 in Agrahara, Mysore
  • Father: Yogiraj Shilpi
  • Spouse: Vijetha
  • Grandfather: Basavanna Shilpi
  • Brother: Suryaprakash
  • Degree: MBA

A wide range of projects appear in his portfolio, all of which are meticulously supervised by him. Notable among these is the magnificent 30-foot statue of Subhash Chandra Bose, a tribute to the great Indian freedom fighter. Another remarkable creation is the canopy behind the Amar Jawan Jyoti, a solemn structure that pays homage to the brave soldiers who have laid down their lives for the nation.

In Kedarnath, he has artfully crafted a 12-foot statue of Adi Shankaracharya, showcasing his deep understanding and appreciation of religious figures. Moving on to Chunchanakatte in Mysore, his vision gave life to a breathtaking 21-foot statue of Hanuman, displaying his remarkable artistic talent.

Sculptor Arun Yogiraj's Ram Lalla idol for Ayodhya's grand temple

His dedication to inclusivity and spreading the message of equality is evident in the 15-foot statue of B.R. Ambedkar, a significant icon in the fight against social discrimination. Moreover, he has immortalized the teachings and philosophy of Shri Ram Krishna Paramhamsa by creating the White Amritshila statue in Mysore.

Furthermore, his expertise extends to smaller yet equally exquisite pieces such as the 6-foot statue of Nandi and the 6-foot Banashankari Devi statue. Paying homage to the rich history of Mysore, he has also sculpted the majestic 14.5-foot Amritshila Mysore King statue, a testament to his deep appreciation for the city’s heritage.

Ram Temple Ram Lalla Idol Sculpted By Arun Yogiraj
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With his proficiency in sculpture, he has supervised numerous other idol creations, each reflecting his unwavering commitment to precision and excellence. From the grandiose to the intricate, his portfolio showcases his versatility and skill as a sculptor, earning him a well-deserved reputation as a craft master.

Awards and Recognitions

Arun Yogiraj Awards and Recognitions
  • In 2014, Arun Yogiraj received the South Zone Young Talented Artist award from the Government of India.
  • The Sculptors Association bestowed the prestigious Shilpa Kousthubha award.
  • He was recognized with the Rajyothsava Award by the Mysuru District Authority.
  • He was honored by the honorable Chief Minister of Karnataka state.
  • The Sports Academy of Mysuru district honored him for his contributions.
  • The Amara Shilpi Jakanacharya Trust presented him with an honorary recognition.
  • He has actively participated in State and National level Sculpture Camps.
  • Kofi Annan, the Former Secretary-General of the United Nations Organization, visited his workshop and personally appreciated his work.
  • He was honored with the Nalwadi award by the Mysore District Administration in 2020.
  • The Crafts Council of Karnataka awarded him an honorary membership in 2021.

A selection of Commissions

PM Modi receives sculpture of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose from  Mysuru sculptor Arun Yogiraj
  • He created a 28-foot monolithic black granite stone sculpture of Sri. Subhash Chandra Bose for India Gate, Delhi, commissioned by the Government of India.
  • In Mysore, he crafted a 15-foot monolithic white marble stone sculpture of Dr B. R. Ambedkar with a pedestal.
  • He is proud to have created India’s largest 10 feet monolithic white marble stone sculpture of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa in Mysore.
  • At the University of Mysore, he sculpted an 11-foot monolithic modern art stone sculpture based on the concept of “Creation of Creation.”
  • He sculpted a 21-foot monolithic stone sculpture in the Hanuman Hoysala style for Chunchunkatte, KR Nagar.
  • His work includes a 12-foot idol of Adi Shankaracharya for Kedarnath, Uttarakhand.
  • He created a bronze statue of Sri U.R. Rao, which now stands at ISRO, Bangalore.
  • Another significant sculpture is the 15 feet monolithic white marble stone sculpture of Maharaja Jayachamarajendra Wodeyar, also located in Mysore.
  • In Mysore, he crafted a 5-foot idol of God Garuda and a 7-foot-tall idol of God Yoga Narasimha Swamy in KR Nagar.
  • He crafted numerous statues of Sir M. Vishveshwaraiah and Sri. Dr. B. R Ambedkar.
  • His work can also be seen in various temples, such as sculptures of Lord Panchamukhi Ganapathi, Lord Mahavishnu, God Buddha, Nandi, Swami Shivbala Yogi, Swami Shivakumara, and Goddess Banashankari.
  • Additionally, he has expertise in hand-carved mantles, stone pillar works, and other various stone carvings.

About Ram Lalla Mandir, Ayodhya

Arun Yogiraj took several months to complete Ram Lalla’s masterpiece, ensuring every aspect of the deity was brought to life. The selection committee, consisting of art connoisseurs and religious scholars, carefully scrutinized Arun’s work before unanimously choosing him as the sculptor for the highly revered idol.

The city of Ayodhya, often hailed as the birthplace of Lord Ram, holds immense religious and cultural significance for Hindus worldwide. The construction of the Ayodhya Ram Mandir, a dream cherished by millions, is seen as the fulfillment of a long-awaited prophecy. The idols of Ram Lalla and his consort Sita are believed to create a divine aura, attracting devotees from far and wide.

The inauguration of the Ayodhya Ram Mandir, scheduled on 24th January 2024, is a momentous occasion that holds great importance for the Hindu community. Prime Minister Modi Ji will inaugurate the mandir. The preparations for the event have begun with utmost care and devotion. To ensure that the idol radiates divine energy, special rituals and prayers are performed.

During the sculpting process, Yogiraj used a Shaligram stone, a sacred stone believed to embody Lord Vishnu, as the base material for the idol. It added a unique spiritual touch to the sculpture. It is said that the presence of a Shaligram stone increases the holiness of the deity it represents and brings good fortune to devotees.

In conclusion

Arun Yogiraj’s skill and devotion to his craft have made him the master sculptor responsible for crafting the idol of Ram Lalla at the Ayodhya Ram Mandir. His artistic brilliance with deep-seated faith has brought to life a divine idol cherished by devotees for generations. This short story of Ayodhya stands as a testament to the power of art, faith, and the richness of Indian culture.

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