Bunt's in Legend

Sathyanapura the Siri

Siri was born in Bunts Community. She was a woman who inspired the woman folk to face the challenges and problems boldly. It is believed that the soul of Siri enters into the body of others, especially the woman and fills in their mind the courage to encounter the problems. Such ladies who beget the strength of Siri in them have been looked up with great regard. Her husband abandoned Siri. Though she was remarried, she was respected by one and all. She was treated as a noble lady. After her death she was worshipped as a 'Daiva' in Tulunadu. But there is clear-cut deference in worship of Siri and other Daivas. Siri is not harsh. Her worship is like a psychic treatment to the devotees.

The Story:

Birumalva of Majaluttu Beedu lived happily with his wife Santhakke in the place in Sathyanapura. Santhakke and her female child expired after some time. The grief -sticken Birumalva became a psychic patient. He worried over the fact that there was no one in his family to continue the religious and noble work he started. One night, in his dream the God appeared before him as a Brahmin. The almighty directed him to renovate the Alade, the worshipping center of Naga, the cobra. Birumalva acted accordingly. He renovated the Alade with dedication. As prasadam, he got betel flower (Pinagara) and a ball of sandalwood paste. Within no time these things changed into a beautiful girl. Birumalva named her 'Siri' and looked after her with great love and care. She grew up into a beautiful maiden. Every one in the town and rural areas talked of her beauty. Kanthu Punja of Basrur Beedu loved and married her. On his marriage, his mother Sankaru Punjedi had assured that her son would manage the affairs of both the states without any discrimination.

Shankara Alva, the son of Annu Shetty of Sooda was assisting Birumalva in the administration. He expected the power of the state would come to him after Birumalva. The marriage of Siri with Kanthu was a hurdle to him. His dream of ascending the throne of Sathyanapura was totally collapsed and he was disappointed. But, Birumalva offered him the Beedu of Sooda and provided with all facilities. Siri went to Basrur. She became pregnant there. Her husband and father in law purchased costly sarees for her and were coming back from the city. On their way a prostitute called Kinhalla ceased the sari from their hands and wore it herself. After a while, she removed it, folded it and handed it over to Kanthu Punja. On the day of 'Seemantha' (A feast arranged for the pregnant woman) Siri refused to accept the Sari saying that the prostitute of Basrur adored it first. At this her husband was enraged. Birumalva convinced both of them and the function went on smoothly.

There was a function at Sathyanapura a feast arranged for the pregnant lady in her native place. Kanthu Punja's mother did not allow him to go there and attend the function. On her labour pain Siri sent for her mother in law to come over there and treat her as her own child. But there was no response from Basrur. Siri delivered, but no one came from Basrur to see the child after 8 months, Birumalva laid down and breathed his last. The message was send to Basrur but of no use. People of Sathyanapura were in confusion. They wanted the presence of Kanthu Punja in removing the dead body. Siri took all courage and gave her shoulder to carry the dead body.

Meanwhile Kanthu Punja joined hands with Shanker Alva and were successful in hatching a conspiracy against Siri. Shanker Alva demanded a share in the property of Satyanapura. He wanted a committee of judges to settle the dispute. The jury called a meeting. Shanker Alva bribed the judges to give judgment in his favor. Siri sent a message to Basrur to inform these developments Kanthu Punja, but Kanthu Punja was out of station. Siri rushed to the jury to defend herself. The jury who danced to the tune of Shanker Alva declared that the right over the kingdom rests on Shanker Alva.

The enraged Siri left the palace with the infant child and went to Basrur. Though Punja protested her first, then agreed to take her into the house on the request of his mother. But there were no discussions between husband and wife. At the end Kanthu Punja ordered her to vacate the place and go out of his border by dusk. The brave Siri never wanted to be a slave to her husband. She walked out without any hesitation. Siri had to face various problems after that. She stayed in Bola forest. The Kshatriya kings there treated her as their own sister and accompanied her to the palace. In the meantime Siri lost her child and Daru, the maidservant who accompanied her from Satyanapur.

Kodsaralva of Kotradi was a close friend of Bola Kings. He was attracted by the beauty of Siri and the Bola rulers made all the arrangements for the wedding of Siri, after getting her consent. Siri was very happy with his husband and his first wife Samu Alvedi. But this did not last for long. After giving birth to a female child, Siri breathed her last. Thereafter, Siri has been worshipped as a Daiva, her story is being told in Siri Pad-dana- the story sung in poetical form.