KALPAVRIKSHA, Mehsana, Gujarat

Sculptural Life Size Metal Tree

KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }

{ A fabulous tree in the garden of heaven, having the power to satisfy all the desires of  a person who sit under it. A devotee, who pursues spiritual discipline under The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA } with faith and belief in THE ALL MIGHTY, surely attains the state of self-realization and purest spiritual knowledge that  ‘The Soul And The SUPREME BEING { Lord BRAMHA } Are One’. }

Shree Simandhar Swami Jain Mandir
Mehsana, Gujarat, India.

On the sacred land of Gujrat, at Mehsana, situated A Jain Temple in the name of Jain Saint Shree Simandhar Swamiji. For the last 27 years, since the temple has been established, people from all around The India do rush here to receive the blessings of The Compassionate Shree Mahavir Swamiji. Apart from being religious place, this temple is the real historical monument with the artistic carving and astonishing architecture done under the temple architect Shree Shambhubhai Sompura. The one-piece 145 Inches gigantic marble statue of The Venerable Lord Shree Mahavir Swamiji do inspires, motivates the pilgrims. You can sense the bliss of relief and peace over here.

In early eighties of 19th century, The Maharaj Saheb Shree Kalyansagarsurishvarji were thinking of crafting a The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA } with the statue of Shree Mahavir Swamiji sitting under it, pursuing the spiritual knowledge and preaching righteous knowledge to the rest of The World. The Maharaj Saheb and the trusties of the temple had always had The Dream Tree in their mind, which should sound like the historical monument with art and craft, the symbol of faith and curiosity, and it should last longer to be available to generations to come.

Initially they planned to carve tree out of stone, but statue experts advised them to use metal as it is easily mould able. Then they thought of using five different metals, but that idea was not well received by all, and they finally decided to use only brass metal. They contacted various architects, engineers & artists, discussed the idea of The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA } with all of them. They planned; discussed; but on paper, nothing had been implemented.

In 1987, an artist from Palitana, designed a model, which had been passed by trustees, and they permitted to go for that actual bigger version of The Tree. They ventured and found it extremely difficult, still they worked hard on it for one and a half year. The shape, the look was not as per model, artist himself was not satisfied, admitted the failure & again search, for an artist who can fulfill the dream of The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }  begun.

The search for an artist ended after almost five years. One of the devotee of Shree Mahavir Swamiji, came across a person from The Mumbai named Shree Prabhudas Makwana, whose team comprising of his elder brothers, Shree Ratilal Makwana & Shree  Bhikhabhai Makwana, having all the experiences and skills in the field of metalworks. They have the big name and fame in the field and had accomplished the many gigantic projects of well-known architects and firms, which demands the highest level of expertness and skills. Makwana Brothers had been directed to The Maharaj Saheb & trustees, followed by many meetings and conferences. During discussions, they had imagined the clear picture of The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }  in their mind. Applying all their skills and experiences, the artists had described how to make The Tree. The description, the presentation, the self-confidence, the aptitude, the instinct, the desire, the thrust to prove, the intention of, Makwana Brothers, touched the hearts of The Maharaj Saheb & trustees. They clearly felt that only they are the capable team of artists to accomplish the dream of The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }. With the positive nod from them, they had designed the sample model of The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }, which was just what they had in their mind. They finalized the terms and conditions, and designed the final layout to be followed, and in 1996 they began, ‘The Making Of The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }’.

Unlike usual projects, there was no blue print, no maps, and no designs. The main aim was to give, ultimate natural shape and looks to The Tree. The project undertaken was then devised under different work categories. All respective responsibilities had been distributed among Shree Prabhudas Makwana, his family members, workers, and other members of the team for the project. It was the challenging great task ahead of them. It required tremendous patience, skills, teamwork and power. To fulfill the dream project, the team had burned the night oil, the team had worked hard pouring the sweat, and the team had stuck to their intense desire. So many people contributed their best from the hearts, to create the history, The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }. 

Various parts of The Tree had been fabricated in Mumbai at Vasai Factory Of Makwana Brothers. Shree Ratilal Makwana had made all the dies and moulds. Several machineries had been customized for the project. Every part of The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA } had been worked out precisely. Each part resembles the respective part of a natural tree like, peel of a tree, trunk, roots, branches, leaves, vein of a leaf, canopy of branches, height, the look. Every part sounds like the part of a real natural tree. They assembled the parts at factory, just to verify the perfect ness, and dissembled them to finally transport them to Mehsana. To transport all the parts of The Tree, three big cranes along with three big trailors were utilized.

After transporting all the parts to The Mehsana Temple, The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA } was erected by assembling various part of it. The foundation of roots had been done to the depth of ‘13 Feet’ and area of  ‘11 Square Feet’, which gives the strength and the support to The Tree, to stand sturdy and steady for the years to come. The trunk has diameter of ‘33 Inches’ with the tree height above roots of near to ‘40 Feet’. Total height including roots, trunk and flags is near about ‘60 Feet’. It’s main branches are biggest 8 ones at lower trunk, medium 6 ones at upper trunk, smaller 4 ones below and near to upper trunk, smaller 4 ones above and near to lower trunk, total of ‘22’ main branches. Each main branch has its own sub branches, sub branches of sub branches…with the total tiny sub branches around ‘5000’. All branches and trunks are made out of brass pipes with thickness of 10 millimeters. Trunk is made up of nine such pipes, covered by moulded sheet of brass to make up peel of a trunk. Each branch has leaves of four different sizes; leaves are almost similar to that of  ‘A Asopalav Tree’, and almost 5,35,000 leaves are there. The diametric area covered under tree is about ‘ 24 Feet’. The Tree contains 10 tones of brass and only brass. No other metals then brass had been used. Processing and machining, comprises mainly of bending, die making, moulding, pressing, gas cutting, argon welding & so on. The manufacturing & erecting processes were a real challenge, that had been met & with ultimate satisfaction of every one. The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }  looks natural and different from all viewing angles. No two parts are similar or symmetrical. It is just like a tree. ‘It was just a dream came true’, which had been eagerly awaited for 13 years, costing Rs.1,25,00,000/-. The Tree happens to be ten times larger than the planned tree. The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }  had been made available to pilgrims on 25th April 1999.

Religiously and historically, The ASHOK VRIKSHA is mounted on three stages of mountains, comprising of silver, gold and precious stones, resembled by three stages of stairs of cement concrete, topped by The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }. On top of The ASHOK VRIKSHA, there is a flag like tree, called The Chaitya Vriksha, resembled by flag made up of brass. Under the shade of The Tree and just below It, are The Four Statues Of The Compassionate Shree Mahavir Swamiji crafted with the five different metals, each residing in one of four main directions that is east, west, north and south; meaning that Shree Mahavir Swamiji is preaching to all the direction that is everywhere, teaching and showing the way towards salvation.

  

The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }  sounds like the historical grand creation of its own kind, with its own uniqueness and with matchless splendor. It seems that it is being existent there for thousands of years and thousands of saints had pursued spiritual discipline under its shadow, to attain the self-realization and to acquire the state of salvation. It is the symbol of faith and belief in ‘GOD’, which inspires us to get in touch with The Supreme Being, which helps us to experience the bliss of devotions. The dignity of The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }  is more than enough to prove itself as wonderful piece of art and place of greater historical importance.

The Team Of  The Project ‘The KALPAVRIKSHA { ASHOK VRIKSHA }’
                    
Chief Artists
Shree Bhikhabhai Premji Makwana
Shree Ratilal Premji Makwana
Shree Prabhudas Premji Makwana

Chief Engineers
Shree Prakash Bhikhabhai Makwana
Shree Dharmendra Ratilal Makwana

Managers And Engineers
Shree Mukesh Ratilal Makwana
Shree Amit Ratilal Makwana

Shree Deepak Prabhudas Makwana
Shree Ketan Prabhudas Makwana 

                                               
Courtesy
Late Shree Premjibhai Kanji Makwana 
Late Shreemati Dudhiben Premji Makwana

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