AdiGuru Shankaracharya re-established the Akhada with the padukas of Lord Dattatreya about 2500 years ago. The main aim of the establishment is protection of Sanatana Dharma. Around 1926, the Akhara was rebuilt in the condition seen today by SandhyaPuriji Maharaj. At different times in previous millenia, it was also called Juna Akhara.

The Guru-disciple tradition goes back from AdiGuru Shankaracharya to Govindapadacharya, Gaudapadacharya, Shukadeva, Sage Vyasa, Sage Parashara, Shakti Maharishi, Sage Vasishtha, and Lord Brahma. It is said that the Akhada is the place where Lord Dattatreya in Treta Yuga taught his disciples.

AdiGuru Shankaracharya had set up four monasteries in Dwarka, Puri, Shringeri and Badrikashrama, with Padmapadacharya, Hastamalakacharya, Sureshwaracharya/Prithvyacharya and Totakacharya respectively as the heads. Puri, Bharati and Saraswati lineages come from Shringeri Math, while Giri lineage comes from Jyoti Math of Badrikashrama. The Jagadgurus of Shringeri Math are listed here.

He established the Gaurishankara Shivalinga in the Akhada.

Gaurishankara Shivalinga

SandhyaPuriji Maharaj

SandhyaPuriji Maharaj came to the Akhada around the mid-1920s from Omkareshwar. There was a dhuni outside the present day Akhada, set up by him, where he stayed for several months before moving inside the present day Akhada. That dhuni was reactivated in July 2011.

AnandPuriji reigniting the old dhuni

The seat of the Akhada was occupied by ShivdayalPuriji before him (from around 1911 to 1926), and before that by AnantPuriji. Only a few photographs of SandhyaPuriji Maharaj exist. If you can send scanned photographs, they will be put here. After SandhyaPuriji (1926 to 12 July 1954), GokarnaPuriji (1954-1977) took the seat, followed by AmarPuriji (1977-1980), RajendraBharatiji (1980-1991) and RamGiriji (1991-2004). In the recent years, the Akhada has undergone extensions and major improvements of facilities under ParamanandaPuriji Maharaj, who took the seat on 12th July 2004.

ParamanandaPuriji Maharaj

Any more information/corrections on the history of the Akhara are welcome.