Thiruvananthapuram

Report sought on dismantled structures

The stone structures dismantled for restoration of the Padmatheertham pond of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple.

The stone structures dismantled for restoration of the Padmatheertham pond of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple.   | Photo Credit: S_GOPAKUMAR

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Centre’s move follows protests against breaking up of Kalmandapams

The Union government has sought a report into the dismantling of two ‘Kalmandapams’ (stone structure) during the Centrally sponsored restoration of the Padmatheertham pond of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple.

The Executive Officer of the Temple Administration Committee has been asked to furnish the report, Director General, Tourism, Union Ministry of Tourism, Satyajith Rajan told mediapersons after visiting the temple pond and surroundings of the temple here on Saturday.

Mr. Rajan, a Kerala cadre IAS officer on deputation to the Centre, said his visit was on the basis of protests from several quarters over the dismantling of the Kalmandapams last month. “We are expecting the a report from Executive Officer V. Ratheesan in a week.”

The Nirmithi Kendra has suspended the restoration work of the stone structures and has said that the other eight structures of the temple pond will not be touched. “Overall, the quality of the work is good,” Mr. Rajan said. The other works around the temple would be completed in two months.

He also reviewed the projects being executed with Central assistance under the Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spirituality Augmentation Drive (PRASAD) and Swadesh Darshan schemes in the State. The ₹99.98-crore Sabarimala-Erumely- Pampa-Sannidhanam Spiritual Circuit, creation of tourism infrastructure in the precincts of Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple; Sree Parthasarthy Temple, Aranmula; and the Sabarimala Ayyappa temple at a cost of ₹99.84-crore, the ₹99.72-crore Pathanamthitta-Gavi-Wagamon-Thekkady ecotourism circuit, and the ₹40-crore scheme for Guruvayur under PRASAD would be completed in June, he said.

Works to the tune of ₹4 crore had been taken out of the ecotourism circuit with the Forest Department refusing permission to take up construction on the land belonging to the KSEB. The Forest Department has been asked to review the decision, he said. Of the ₹1,700 crore allocated in the budget for tourism this year, Mr. Rajan said ₹1,000 crore is for Swadesh Darshan and ₹100 crore for PRASAD scheme.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2020 1:08:04 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Thiruvananthapuram/report-sought-on-dismantled-structures/article22921224.ece

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