By Team Mangalorean (With Inputs from Shankar Bhat )
Puttur Sept 30: Professor V. Shama Bhat, retired HOD, College of Dental Sciences, Manipal and now Prof. & HOD, Dental Materials, Yenepoya Dental College, Deralakatte, Mangalore is a multi-faceted man. He is an ardent lover of music and an avid collector of Shaligramas and Rudrakshas. He is responsible for the unique Dental Museum in Manipal and at the Yenepoya Dental College in Mangalore, perhaps a one of its kind in the whole of Asia. He and his late wife have also given to this world, a unique Veena artist, who is blind, Manipal Arunakumari.
From the Vedic period, the Rudraksha trees which have special medicinal properties are found mostly in the Islands of Java, Sumatra, Borneo, Bali, Iran, Java, Indonesia and Nepal. But Prof. V. Shama Bhat grows them right here in Puttur, Karnataka.
Many people had told him that these Rudraksha trees cannot be grown in Karnataka. About 12 years back, he took up the challenge of proving them wrong. He started by bringing some Rudraksha trees through his students from Nepal and planted in his agriculture land at Kabaka in Puttur, Karnataka. After very careful observation of the trees, he managed to nurture them to full growth and began cultivating them in earnest.
Later, he also donated about three plants to Alike and Shri Ramachandrapura Mutt, Hosanagara. Two trees have grown in his house at Vadya, Kabaka. For the past 4-5 years the trees have been yielding enough Rudrakshas, thanks to the untiring efforts of Prof. Bhat.
Today, he has a good number of 5 Mukhi beads and also the 3, 4, 6, and 7 Mukhi in small numbers. Rare Rudrakshas like Ganesh Rudraksha, 2 Mukhi, 11 Mukhi, 13 Mukhi and 14 Mukhi have been seen in these trees. 14 Mukhi is the most precious Rudraksha, also known as DEVAMANI. If we observe the 14 Mukhi bead, we can see "OM" in Sanskrit and the face of Lord Ganesh in it. These rare Mukhis are very expensive in the market.
At present Prof. Bhat’s son, Shankar Bhat is looking after these trees. Many people have come to visit their place to view these divine trees. Interested persons who would like to view these trees and purchase the beads can take a prior appointment with Mr. Shankar Bhat on his cell no: 9449282836 / 9880245936.