The 149-year-old-Dakshineswar Kali temple will be restored and beautified, along with its surroundings, especially the banks of the Hooghly, with assistance from the Centre.
Union minister for shipping Ved Prakash Goel, who arrived here on a day’s visit, announced on Sunday that the Centre had okayed the Dakshineswar temple makeover project. “There will be no dearth of funds for the project,” Goel announced after unveiling the project on Swami Vivekananda’s 141st birthday.
Goel stressed that the beautification would be completed before the monsoon. He said he had already written twice to Trinamul Congress MP from Calcutta North West Sudip Bandopadhyay, promising financial assistance for the project.
Bandopadhyay, accompanying the minister, said he had discussed the project with Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani. “Besides the Dakshineswar temple, I am keen on improving all 41 old ghats on the Hooghly, from Cossipore to Prinsep Ghat. At least eight of them need to be restored immediately,” he added.
According to Bandopadhyay, Union tourism minister Jagmohan had already visited Dakshineswar and his ministry had disbursed Rs 1 crore for the beautification of the 41 ghats.
Kushol Chowdhury, trustee of the temple committee, later said work would be completed in two phases. Initially, the Hooghly banks will be restored, while beautification of the temple and its surroundings will follow. The Rs 2-crore project submitted to the Centre includes prevention of bank erosion and beautification of the bank adjacent to the temple, Chowdhury added.