Orissa MLAs worried over safety of Konark Temple
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Last Updated: Saturday, August 07, 2010, 22:08
  
Bhubaneswar: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has assured the Orissa government that the Sun temple at Konark was "in good state of preservation" as members of Orissa Legislative Assembly today expressed concern over the safety of the monument.

"The Prime Minister in a letter to Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has said the Sun temple is in good state of preservation," Tourism and Culture minister Debi Prasad Mishra told the House, during discussion over a calling attention motion on the issue of safety of the 13th century structure.

Stating that his department was in constant touch with the Centre as well as the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) which looked after conservation of the monument since 1915, the minister said Orissa government in the meantime prepared a detailed plan for drainage of rain water from temple premises.

Mishra was replying to NCP Legislature Party leader Amar Satpathy's statement that water logging around the temple could pose danger to the structure.

"Whenever there is rain, water logging takes place at the Sun Temple," Satpathy pointed out. Many BJD members also supported him expressing concern over conservation of the world heritage.

"How can the state government remain silent when it is observed that ASI is not taking proper care of the monument," BJD's Samir Ranjan Das asked. He also enquired about proposed global tender for conservation of the temple by the ASI.

Not satisfied with the work undertaken by the ASI, local MLA Rabindra Mallick asked the Speaker to constitute a house committee to look after conservation of a rare monument like the Sun temple.

Quoting a report of the superintending archaeologist, Bhubaneswar circle, Mishra admitted that inundation takes place in the temple premises as water in the surrounding area seeps into the compound.

"Steps were being taken every year to pump out rain water from the soak pit located at the western side of the temple. This apart, water was also being soaked by sand in the premises resulting in quick draining," the minister said.

Similarly steps were also being taken to prevent entry of outside water to the temple premises.

On conservation proposal by Indian Oil Foundation, the minister said he was in touch with Union minister Murali Deora to expedite Rs 32 crore project for conservation of Konark Temple.

Not satisfied with the work undertaken by the ASI, local MLA Rabindra Mallick urged the Speaker to constitute a house committee to look after conservation of a rare monument like the Sun temple, Konark.

Quoting a report of the superintending archaeologist, Bhubaneswar circle, the minister admitted that inundation takes place in the temple premises as water in the surrounding area seeps into the compound.

"Steps were being taken every year to pump out rain water from the soak pit located at the western side of the temple. This apart, water was also being soaked by sand in the premises resulting in quick draining," the minister said. Similarly steps were also being taken to prevent entry of outside water to the temple premises.

On the conservation proposal by the Indian Oil Foundation, the minister said that he was in touch with the Union minister Murali Deora to expedite Rs 32 crore project for conservation of Konark Temple.

PTI


First Published: Saturday, August 07, 2010, 22:08


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