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regular-article-logo Thursday, 25 April 2024

Odisha: Archaeological Survey of India commences repair work on Puri Shree Jagannath Temple

'The IIT, Chennai, has conducted a comprehensive study on the Jagannath Temple and how to protect it from weathering and repair the various cracks, damages that appeared on the structure. They have approved the design. Following their advice, we are carrying out the repair work'

Subhashish Mohanty Bhubaneswar Published 22.02.24, 05:53 AM
Shree Jagannath Temple

Shree Jagannath Temple File picture

Based on the recommendation of the IIT, Chennai, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has started repair works on the Nata Mandap (Dancing hall) of the 12th century Puri Shree Jagannath Temple.

Superintendent, ASI, D.B. Gadanayak told The Telegraph, "The IIT, Chennai, has conducted a comprehensive study on the Jagannath Temple and how to protect it from weathering and repair the various cracks, damages that appeared on the structure. They have approved the design. Following their advice, we are carrying out the repair work."

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He said: “As per the advice of the ASI, four stainless beams will be used inside to strengthen the Nata Mandap. The repair work of the Nata Mandap will start on Friday. As per the schedule, the work will be completed by March 20. The Chhattisha Niyog (The Confederation of Servitors) has also given its approval for the repair of the Nata Mandap. The scaffolding will be fixed to repair the work.”

He said: “The repair work of the Jagmohan (hall facing the sanctum sanctorum) of the Jagannath temple has already been completed.”

Considering the repair work, the temple administration has decided to make some changes in the rituals and there will be a restriction of devotees to the temple. As per the schedule, the repair work will begin by 1pm every day and will be finished by 7pm. The temple will open by 2am. During the repair work, there will be restrictions of the devotees entering the Nata Mandap. The area, however, will be thrown open to the devotees after 8pm. The temple will be closed by 11pm after the Badasinghar Vesha, one of the most important Veshas of the Lord, is over.

The officials also maintained that the Orissa High Court had also issued directions to complete the repair work of the shrine by April. The court has also asked the SJTA to provide all the logistic support to the ASI to ensure that the repair work of the Nata Mandap goes smoothly. The court has also observed that the devotees coming to the temple for the darshan of the deities need not to face any sort of trouble while the repair work is on.

The ASI officials also admitted that damage was reported in the inner treasury of the Ratna Bhandar (Treasure trove) of the shrine. “It came to light during the laser scanning that took place in November last year. We used state-of-the-art laser scanning cameras at 49 points of the Bhandar. We will soon formulate a plan and start the repair work with the approval of everyone including the state government,” said officials.

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