Bhubaneswar: Tourism and Culture minister Ashok Panda said though the Odisha government has agreed for repair and conservation of Sun Temple at Konark under ‘Adopt a Heritage’ scheme of the Centre, it will vehemently oppose complete privatization of the world famous heritage.
“The state government has agreed with a condition that only repair and conservation of the Konark temple would be done under ‘Adopt a Heritage’ scheme. But complete privatization of this world famous heritage will be opposed tooth and nail,” the minister maintained.
The Union Ministry of Tourism gave Letters of Intent (LoI) to seven shortlisted companies for adopting 14 monuments including the Sun Temple of Konark under ‘Adopt a Heritage’ scheme which was launched by the President of India on September 27, 2017, on the occasion of World Tourism Day.
This project is a key initiative of Ministry of Tourism in close collaboration with Ministry of Culture and Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), to develop the heritage sites/monuments and make them tourist-friendly to enhance tourism potential and their cultural importance in a planned and phased manner. The project focuses on active participation of public/private sector companies and individuals to partner in the noble social responsibility initiative by putting forth the proposal for adopting monument.
Notably, the Ministry of Tourism has signed a MoU with Dalmia Bharat and the ASI to adopt the iconic Red Fort monument in New Delhi and Gandikota Fort in Kadapa district of Andhra Pradesh under the scheme.
The decision of the Centre to give a 17th-century monument to a private conglomerate had provoked both protest and support on the social media.