BENGALURU: A 54-year-old Koppal engineer who deeply loved and cared for his mother and lost her in 2018 has built a life-size wax statue of her to ensure she remains a constant presence in his life.
Thali Chandraiah Venkatesh now spends long hours before his mother Nagrur Manorama’s statue every day, reminiscing her affection for him and the lessons he learnt from her. Venkatesh said his mother was a big inspiration who always had zeal even when she was very ill. She was keen on doing all she could to help people and instrumental in making him a better human being, he added.
Venkatesh, a mechanical engineer, works as head liaison at Skeiron Groups, a company that deals with sustainable energy. He is the youngest of Manorama’s four sons; two of his brothers are dead and he has a sister. The family is from Shankarapuram in the city.
Manorama’s death left a void in Venkatesh’s life. During the year after her death, he went to Varanasi every month to perform the post-death rituals, besides holding a Vaikunta Samaradhane gathering of nearly 1,500 priests.
But Venkatesh feared the memories of his mother may fade unless she was brought back to him in some physical form. “It was then I decided to get her statue built. Statues are normally built for popular personalities and it was not easy for me to find sculptors. However, after extensive search, I found Shridhar Murthy, a sculptor from Peenya,” he said.
In August 2019, Venkatesh got the statue built and placed it in the hall of his house on a chair where Manorama used to sit daily. “I meditate in front of her every day and recall her teachings. These sessions bring alive my memories of her. I also chant Rudra mantra,” he explained.
Manorama, an arts graduate, was working with Ballari corporation — she assisted them in policymaking as a consultant. She continued to work and remained self-reliant after the death of her husband TS Chandraiah. Venkatesh, who’s unmarried, said his life is dedicated to his mother and he will live with her memories.
A Raichur businessman had built a statue of his dead wife in 2017. A man from Koppal also built a life-size statue of his late wife in 2020.