From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Daṇḍapāṇi literally means ‘one who holds the daṇḍa or the staff in his hand’.

In the mythological and iconographical literature, daṇḍapāṇi word can apply to two deities:

  1. Yama - the god of death and the deity presiding over the southern quarter
  2. Subrahmaṇya - variously known as Skanda, Kumāra and Kārttikeya

It is applied to Subrahmaṇya to a greater extent. Iconographically, Subrahmaṇya is shown as holding a long cudgel or staff (daṇḍa) in his right hand. His left hand rests on the left loin. He is also known as Daṇḍāyudhapāṇi.


  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore