New Delhi: The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) on Tuesday said it has completed the first phase of restoration work on the Kedarnath temple in Uttarakhand that was damaged in floods and landslides in June.
Conservation work for structural as well as chemical preservation at the 11th century temple was taken up by the ASI in the second week of October.
During the first phase, 489 cubic metres of debris have been removed from the plinth and approximately 635 square metres area of the plinth has been cleared, an official statement said on Tuesday.
"The necessary stone packing to the damaged portions of the temple walls has been done. The replacement of the damaged wooden door on the western side of the temple has been completed," it said.
The cleaning of the "Garbha Griha" (sanctum sanctorum) walls has been done up to about nine feet in height, and some of the debris deposited on the southern, western and eastern sides have been removed, it added.
The Geological Survey of India (GSI) team has also done necessary GPR (ground-penetrating radar) survey of the site to study anomalies beneath the ground and to check the status of the foundation.
The Kedarnath temple is at an altitude of 3,969 metres above sea level. It is built in the Rekha-Sikhara style with three different horizontal divisions.
The second phase of conservation work will include repairs to the plinth of the temple, filling up of missing stones, after duly carving and matching the original stone, on the facades of the temple, cleaning of the entire interior of the temple, removing marble flooring and providing deodar wooden flooring inside the garbha-griha and Antrala (connecting the sanctum sanctorum and outer hall) of the temple.
"Necessary material, tools and equipment will be purchased for the commencement of conservation work next year," the statement said.
The work will resume next year after the winter season in consultation with the Badrinath-Kedarnath Temple Committee (BKTC).
Apart from this, a detailed proposal for the improvement of the environment around the temple will also be prepared.