A commemorative postage stamp on the Golden Gopuram of Venkateswara Temple, Tirumala, a landmark Vaishnavite temple :
Issued by India
Issued on Oct 11, 2002
Issued for : The Ananda Nilayam Vimanam, apart from being a source of spiritual inspiration, has also inspired various activities in the fields of social reform, literature and culture. The Department of Posts is happy to issue a postage stamp featuring this important monument.
The First Day Cover portrays the Geological Arch of Tirumala, a unique creation of nature, believed to be more than 1000 million years old. The Arch also figures prominently in the mythology associated with Lord Venkateswara.
Stamp & FDC : Sankha Samanta
Cancellation : Alka Sharma
Type : Stamp, Postal Used
Colour : Six Colour
Denomination : 1500 Paise
Overall size : 2.90 x 3.91 cms.
Printing Size : 2.90 x 3.91 cms.
Perforation : 13 x 13
Paper : Imported un w/m stamp paper
Stamps Printed : 3 million
Number per issue sheet : 40
Printing Process : Photo Offset
Printer : Madras Security Printers Ltd.
- The Golden Tower over the Sanctum Sanctorum of the Tirumala temple, commonly known as the Ananda Nilayam Vimanam is a graceful symbol of great religious and historical significance.
- Built in the Dravida style of architecture, the Ananda Nilayam Vimanam was gold gilted approximately 700 years ago by the benefactors who patronised the temple. From the historical inscriptions available it is evident that gold gilting of Ananda Nilayam Vimanam was a continuous process with the gold donated by devotees. The various inscriptions relating to Ananda Nilayam Vimanam reveal that many kings used to show their gratitude by way of contributing to the gold gilting work of Ananda Nilayam Vimanam at the Sri Venkateshwara Temple of Tirumala whenever they were successful in their campaigns or their vows were fulfilled.
- The first and foremost of the benefactors to be associated with the gold gilting of Ananda Nilayam Vimanam was Jatavarma Sundara Pandya I who started the process in 13th Century. The most famous in the line of benefactors was Krishnadevaraya, the legendary monarch of Vijayanagar. Because of its intimate connection to various dynastic families, the Vimanam is significant to the process of reconstructing the histories of south India in the ancient, medieval and modern eras.
- The Vimanam is noted for its arresting figures of divine grace and appearance. These figures represent the different cultural beliefs that existed from time to time. With the passage of time the Vimanam lost its brilliance and the masonry work could not withstand the forces of nature. The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams found it therefore necessary to rebuild the structure and replace the old plates by new ones in 1958.
- Text : Based on material furnished by the T.T. Devasthanams, Tirupati.