Meet the mastermind
After spending quality time at Jatayu Earth’s Center, one becomes quite curious about the mastermind behind this grand project. He is none other than the gifted film director, art director and sculptor Mr. Rajiv Anchal !
Mr. Rajiv Anchal is an alumnus of College of Fine Arts, Thiruvananthapuram and recipient of two Kerala Lalithakala Academy awards. This talented artist is well-known among Malayalam movie buffs since he has imprinted an indelible mark in their minds. He won the Kerala State Film Award for Best Art Direction in 1990 for the film Njan Gandharvan. His directorial hits like Butterflies and Kashmeeram were followed by his most celebrated film Guru, which was India's official entry to the 1997 Oscars in the Best Foreign Film category. Beyond the Soul, his English language film, won three awards at the New York International Independent Film and Video Festival.
During that time Mr. Rajiv Anchal participated in a concept presentation contest conducted by the Tourism Department to build a monumental statue on a hilltop in Chadayamangalam. He studied the local history and submitted the Jatayu Earth’s Center concept based on sustainable tourism and won the contract on a BOT basis. He then took a break from his film career and dedicated ten long years for the successful completion of the Jatayu Earth’s Center.
Jatayu may be the first mythical bird who laid down his life to save the honour of a woman. The artist wanted to highlight the gallantry of Jatayu as an example for today’s generation.
It was a humungous challenge to convert the 65 acres of wildness into a world class tourist destination without causing any damage to the environment. Mr. Anchal surveyed the landscape and envisioned the possibilities of such an opportunity within the rugged terrain. Finally, he opted for the sustainable and eco-friendly tourism model.
But the estimated cost was very high. Since the project was on BOT basis, he had to find the funding sources also. Initially he started with his own savings and other resources. As an artist it was huge task for him to transform into an entrepreneur. However, he succeeded in incorporating NRI investors about the significance of Jatayu Earth’s Center and the project took off. Undoubtedly, he came out victorious in his endeavor by creating the world’s largest bird sculpture and turning Jatayupara into India’s first rock tourism destination. Jatayu model investment is now an inspiration for many entrepreneurs in Kerala.