Manipal Heritage Village opens to Public from May 9

Udupi: Hasta Shilpa, a cultural village housing remodelled ruined structures of different cultural backgrounds dating back to several centuries, will be opened for the public on trial basis from 9 to 30 May, 2016.

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The Hasta Shilpa Heritage Village is a lesson in history and culture. Spread over six acres of land in Manipal, the Village has houses dating back centuries and is the brainchild of former banker Vijayanath Shenoy.

As many as 26 heritage structures of architectural value, including palaces, have been re-created on a six-acre plot at the village by Vijaynath Shenoy.

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The Heritage Village also comprises of a number of museums and galleries: The pride among them is the Museum of Folk Arts, which is considered as one of the largest and most unique of its kind in India in respect of volume of space, number and variety of objects, rare character of exhibits and their imaginative display.

Vijaynath Shenoy is a retired banker. He has converted his house into a museum and named it Hasta Shilpa. He vividly recalls the pain of seeing a beautiful ancestral home in Malnad being pulled down by its owner in 1983. He begged, pleaded and cajoled, but the adamant owner did not stop. In desperation, Shenoy yelled at him: “You have no right to demolish this house. It does not belong to you. It belongs to all of us.”

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The owner got so furious at Shenoy’s effrontery that he had him physically thrown out of his estate. From a distance, Shenoy watched the grand old manor come down.

From that helplessness was born a steely determination to save not only homes but the precious architectural heritage of his region. It was not enough to save a few utensils, window frames, and carved doors. He had to save whole homes that contained within its shaded interiors, the whispering narratives of his ancestors.

From an ordinary bank employee, he became an extraordinary heritage conservationist. And a new vision possessed him – to set up a Heritage village in Manipal where he could preserve whole homes.

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As many as 26 heritage structures includes the early l9th century Kunjur Chowkimane, Hungarcutta Bandsale Mane, a wood-rich house, Jungama Mutt Puchamoaru in Karkala taluk, which is over 600 years, Mudhol palace of Bijapur, Navayath house of Bhatkal, Portuguese house, Mangaluru Christians house, Kamal Mahal of Kukkanoor and others were re-created on a six-acre of land.

According to the Hastha Shilpa Trust, the public would be allowed to visit these galleries and other buildings in the heritage village after May 9. The Heritage Village will be kept closed for a period of three months during the rainy season in June, July, and August. Tours will be resumed from the month of September onwards. The Heritage Village tour is divided into two sessions (Morning 10 am to 12 noon, afternoon 3 pm- 5pm) daily of two hours duration. A maximum of 15 per session would be allowed. Children below the age of 12 years are not allowed. Entry ticket is priced at Rs 500 per person and is available through online booking exclusively through Visitors availing the Heritage Village tour would be shown the interiors of eight structure including one open-air museum, exteriors of fourteen structures and several streetscapes along the way.

Pics Source by Divakar Hiriyadka

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