Preserve our heritage

The April 10 edition of Friday Review carried several interesting stories — ‘Capturing the magic’ on Tranquebar, ‘The confluence of different styles’ on the Kudumiyanmalai temple and ‘On The Buddha’s trail.’ This left me wondering why we are so indifferent to our rich cultural heritage, especially since our civilisation is so vibrant. I refer to the ruins of Hampi, and the Sun temples at Konark and Modeira, which have been accorded ‘World Heritage’ status’ by the U.N.

Conferring the world heritage status does not mean we have to allow our temples to decay without restoring them to their original glory and beauty. A yardstick must be applied by ASI and the U.N. to restore these monuments and not allow them to rot and crumble. The kings of yore built these monuments keeping in mind the maintenance for generations to come. Take the case of Sri Gopalakrishna temple on the bed of the Krishnarajasagar Dam. The temple had spare pillars in a separate room, which could be used if the temple was to be renovated! This Hoysala period temple was submerged in the dam for nearly 60 years before being rebuilt at a different site when the dam ran dry.

T. M. Sundararaman, Chennai.

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