Dr. Umanatha Shenoy

Dr.Y.Umanatha Shenoy is an acclaimed Indian archaeologist, historian, epigraphist, iconographist, a writer in Kannada and also an ardent researcher.  He can converse with ease in the following languages-Kannada, English, Hindi, Konkani, Tulu, Marathi, Sanskrith and Prakrith.
At present, Dr. Shenoy is engaged in the study of the valuable historical records of Dharmasthala under the kind benevolence of Padmavibhushana Dr. D. Veerendra Heggade of Shri Kshethra Dharmasthala.

Early Life and Studies

Dr. Umanatha Shenoy M.A., Ph.D. was born in July 1947 as the second son of Vedabhushana Venkatesh Devarao Shenoy  Malgaunkar (Yelikka Vekatesh Bhat) and Smt Sushila Bai. He completed his primary, highschool and college education in Puttur and Post graduate studies in Mysore University.
Dr. Shenoy was awarded with Ph.D., Degree by Mysore University for his thesis, titled “Region and Religion: Dharmasthala-A Study”, which was prepared with the help of the abundant valuable records found in Dharmasthala temple.

Teaching Career

Dr Umanatha Shenoy joined the teaching profession in 1971 at Loka Seva Junior College, Alike. He opened the Post graduate Department of History in Mangalore University in 1982 under the guidance of his professor, the Vice Chancellor of the University, Dr. B.Sheik Ali, a renowned historian and became a teaching faculty there. Dr. Umanatha Shenoy joined the Department of History in Shri Dharmasthala Manjunatheshwara College, Ujire in 1987. He was a Ph.D. Research guide in Ha.Ma. Nayaka Research Centre in S.D.M. College, Ujire under Hampi University. He served there as the Head of the Department, Chairman of the Board of Studies and Board of Examination of the Department of this autonomous College, until he got retired in 2018 having served as a UGC faculty and management staff.

Awards and Achievements

 * He was honoured with the epithet “Samshodhaka Praveena” by Jain Matt, Moodbidri in 2008.
* He was honoured with “The Gomateshwara Vidyapitha Prashasthi for literature” by the Bahubali Prakrith Vidyapitha of Shravanabelagola in 2009.
* He was honoured by Gouda Brahmana Sabha, Mumbai for his services to the society (2009).
* Dr. Shenoy was honoured at the Convocation ceremony of Bahubali Prakrith Vidyapith, at Shravanabelagola (2013).

Titles of Dr Shenoy

Jinavani Puraskara

Samsodhaka Praveena

The Gomateshwara Vidyapitha Prashasthi for literature

As a researcher on Jain history and culture, he worked in the Ramarani Jaina Research Centre Jaina Mutt, Moodbidri from 1981 to 1987, reading hundreds of old palm leaf manuscripts found there and published about 50 articles, which have shed new light on many historical events and personalities. He has been honoured with the holy “Jinavani Puraskara” by His Holyness Bharatha Bhushana Swasthi Shri Charukeerthi Bhattaraka Pandithacharyavarya Swamiji, Jain Mutt, Jaina Kashi Moodbidri

Research Work

Apart from being a Master in History with the specialization in Mughal History, Dr. Shenoy is a trained epigraphist, iconographist and an archaeologist. He has brought to light many objects of the past, has published small write-ups to almost all the newspapers in Karnataka and cover page articles in the weeklies and published about 200 research articles in national and international journals, periodicals, souvenirs and commemorative and felicitation volumes. He has discovered and published many stone inscriptions with their translations and other details in history periodicals.

* He has undertaken the translation work of some parts of Siri Bhuvalaya, a Kannada book, of 9th century A.D. by Acharya Kumudendu into English from 2010 under Project Siri Bhuvalaya launched by Narendra and Sushila Jain Foundation Vienna, VA, 22181 sponsored by Narendr Kumar Jain Virginia, USA.

* Served as the district Coordinator of the survey of Manuscripts under the program of Government of India by employing 30 scholars in the field in 2005

*Served as the member of the Executive committee of Samsthan Sri Mutt Dabholi , Vengurla Taluk, Sindhudurga District, Maharashtra from 1998 to 2006  


* Two traditional Inscriptions composed by Dr. Shenoy can be seen in Shri Sadashiva Temple, Denjoli and Shri Somanatha Temple, Kutyar, both in Belthangady Taluk.

* He made the study of all the 56 copper plate inscriptions found in the Jain Matt, Moodbidri with the financial grants from the Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR) in 2004.

*Unearthed a Tulu Inscription at Icchur near Uppinangady which says that the temple found here was built by the king and the inscription was caused by Vasappa. 

* Engaged in the search of Records related to Dharmasthala in the TamilNadu State Archives Chennai (1991), Mysore Palace Record(1992) and Karnataka State Archives in the Vidhana Soudha, Bangalore(1992). 

* Unearthed one of the rarest inscriptions of his Holiness Shri Bhuvanendra Swamiji of kashi Mutt which was found embedded in the pedestal of the pipal tree at the western entrance of Shri Venkataramana Swami Temple of Bantwal, Dakshina Kannada.

He undertook the survey and study of historical monuments found at the following places and published small booklets on them.

1. Bangadi (1999)
2.Aladangadi (2000)
3. Venur (2002)
4. Moodbidri (2003)
5. Naravi (2004)
6. Belthangady (2005)
7. Bailangadi (2006)
8. Mercara (2007)
9. Shashakapura (2008)


He acts as a resource person in re-orientation courses, training camps and workshops. Apart from writing research article, he presents research papers in the national and international conference of academic bodies, among them his important speeches are

1. “The Jaina Monuments of Moodbidri” in the inaugural function of the International Shramana Samskrithi Sammelen at Moodbidri (1987).
2. “Manjunatha, the God of Beauty and Art” under the auspice of Indian Art History Congress in Tezpur University, Assam (2001)
3. “Women rulers of Coastal Karnataka as known from Inscriptions” under the auspices of the Epigrphical society of India at Shri Parashakthi Women’s autonomous College, Tenkashi, TamilNadu (2001).
4. “A new light on the Buddist Sthupa at Sanchi” during the week long program on museology at Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh (2007).
5. Dr.Shenoy was deputed by Padmavibhushana Dr. D. Veerendra Heggade of Dharmasthala to the conference of Research Foundation for Jainology (Shwethambara and Digambara sects jointly) held at Chennai in 2006, where he spoke on the necessity of documentation of the old neglected manuscripts found in houses and institutions.
6. He shared his experiences in teaching of local history in the refresher courses held at Gulbarga University, Thilak Maharashtra Vidyapith, Pune, Gorakhpur University and Lucknow University, U.P.

He has presented Research Papers in the conferences held at
1. Gulbarga University (1984).
2. Karnataka University (1985).
3. Kuvempu University (1989).
4. MGM College, Udupi (1991, 1999).
5. Dharmasthala (1999, 2008).
6. Shri Ramachandrapura Mutt (2002).
7. Shri Chennappa Swamy Vidyapith, Honnali (2004)
8. Sedam (2005).
9.Raghavendra Mutt, Nanjanagudu (2006).
10. Hagaribommanahalli (2007) and so on.

Academic Bodies

He is an active participant in the activities of the following Academic bodies

  • Karnataka Ithihasa Academy, Bengaluru.
  • Place-names Society of India, Mysore.
  • The World University Service, Chennai.
  • Epigraphical Society of India, Mysore.
  • State Kannada Sahitya Parishath, Bengaluru.
  • Indian Art History Congress, Guwahati, Assam.
  • B.S. Baliga Historical and Archival Research Association Chennai.
  • Dhavalathraya Trust, Jain Mutt, Moodbidri.

Personal Life

 In 1988, Dr Shenoy got married with Smt. Vijaya Kumari, a senior KAS officer, who has served as an Assistant Commissioner, Joint Commissioner of Mangalore Corporation and also as the state cadre DC. Because of his regard for Indian architecture and tradition, he has undertaken educational excursions along with his wife to all the states of India including Andaman and Nepal and also places like Ayodhya, Mathura, Kashi, Bodhgaya, Lumbinivana, Kushinagar, Haridwar, Hrishikesh, Kedarnath, Badarinath, Puri, Shringeri, Konark, Kanyakumari, Madurai, Tiruvananthapuram, Guruvayooru, Kalati, Srinagar, Pehalgao, Kargil, Vaishnodevi, Amritsar, Wagha Border, Jaisalmer etc. Got the First Prize in the Adarsha Dampathi Contest conducted by Udaya TV at Puttur in 2000.  


  • He has served as an Examiner for the Gazetted Probationers (Main) arranged by KPSC (2002).
  • He acted as the Coordinator of Prakrith Studies in his College and as the President of Tulu Sangha, he has published two anthologies of Tulu poems titled “ Dompo” and “Kurve”.