Jagannath Temple To Be Repaired Before Rath Yatra: ASI DG

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Puri: In the wake of the devastating cyclonic storm Fani that rendered extensive damage to the Jagannath Temple on May 3, Director General of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) Usha Sharma on Friday assured that the repair and restoration work of the temple will be completed before the Rath Yatra scheduled on July 4.

“The repair and restoration work of the temple is going on a war-footing. Senior ASI officials and engineers will camp in Puri to ensure that the work is completed before the Rath Yatra,” Sharma told mediapersons after visiting the temple.

The temple had sustained extensive damage as the iron scaffolding around the main temple put up by the ASI to stitch the cracks in the beam and the roof joints could not sustain the gale speed of more than 200 kmph during the landfall of the cyclonic storm. As a result, there was a crack of about one-and-a-half inch on the Ramanandi Chita akin to the Aanla Bedha (cap stone) under the Neelachakra (blue wheel) atop the temple after the scaffolding collided with the outer temple wall before falling off. The crashing of the iron scaffolding broke the ‘gara’ (a brass pot) placed atop the Bhoga Mandap of the Lord.

Besides, the pot-shaped finial (Kalasa) of the Baraha Temple and the idols of two lions of the temple were also completely damaged due to the crashing of the scaffolding.

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