Union Minister of Housing, Urban Poverty Alleviation and Culture, Kumari Selja, has promised to expedite the introduction of a sound and light programme on the Big Temple and King Raja Raja Cholan at the Big Temple here.

After visiting the temple on Saturday, she asked the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to place all papers related to the proposal before her so that she could take it up with the ministry. She said that the sculpture and paintings at the temple were unique. Asked why the Big Temple had not been included in the list of wonders of the world, she said that it was decided based on a voting method formulated by a private agency and the Ministry of Culture had nothing to do with it. The ministry treated all monuments, whether they are in north or south, equally.

K. Baskaran, District Collector; Sathyabama Bhadrinath, Superintending Archaeologist, ASI; Babaji Rajah Bhonsle, Senior Prince and Hereditary Trustee of Palace Devasthanam; and Ramamoorthy, Tourist Officer, accompanied the Minister.

Later, she Minister visited the Art Gallery and Saraswathi Mahal Library. Mr. Baskaran said that proposals for improving the gallery and library were submitted to the Minister. Ms. Selja later visited the Darasuram temple.