A team of experts of Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) led by Deputy Superintendent Jeetendra Kumar Pattnaik on Monday inspected the 12th century Jagannath Temple, a day after a stone-like structure fell off the outer structure of the temple, leaving a priest injured.
However after examination, the ASI officials claimed that it was not a stone but a block of lime plaster.
Pattnaik said the structure would be further examined and necessary repairs taken up as per the advice of the statutory technical committee of ASI.
Sources said on Sunday night, a stone fell from the ‘Amolaka’ region of the temple and landed near the Kanchi Ganesh temple inside the temple complex. It broke into pieces and a splinter hit a priest, Debi Prasad Panda, who was accompanying some pilgrims for ‘darshan’ of the deities, on the head. He has been admitted to the district headquarters hospital. The ASI which has been in charge of conserving and maintaining the temple since 1972-74, has time and again come under public criticism over safety of the structure.
As per official records, tumbling of stones from the temple’s inner roof and outer structure has been noticed since 1842. And on three occasions, huge stone blocks, weighing several tonnes, fell from the ‘Amolaka’ and inner roof of ‘Garbagruha’.