Gundicha temple’s old beams to be replaced

Nata Mandap will be reinforced with steel and granite after technical panel detects cracks and dislodgement
Gundicha temple. (Photo I Express)
Gundicha temple. (Photo I Express)

BHUBANESWAR: The old beams and stone capitals in Gundicha temple at Puri will be replaced as a part of the conservation work to be taken up by the technical core committee of the Shree Jagannath temple. The committee had detected cracks in beams and stone columns (crowning or topmost part of a column/pillar) in Nata Mandap of the temple on Saturday during an examination.

Speaking to The New Indian Express, member of the technical core committee NC Pal said very wide cracks and dislodgement were seen on capitals of all the four stone columns and beams in the old temple. “We will further strengthen the structure by changing the damaged portions with new materials,” he said. While the stone columns in Nata Mandap are made of granite, the capitals are in sandstone.

The beams were made of iron. Pal informed that the sandstone capitals will be replaced with granite capitals. “Since granite stones last longer than sandstone and are less prone to environmental damage, we will replace all the damaged stone capitals with granite,” he said. Similarly, around 18 to 20 iron beams in the Nata Mandap will be replaced with beams made of stainless steel to prevent rusting. The existing beams are made from wrought iron which corrodes due to weather and saline air.

“These damages are natural as the temple ages and the damaged parts can be reinforced well in time so that there is no threat to the structure,” he said. The conservation work will be completed before the Rath Yatra next year.

Prior to Rath Yatra this year, the core committee members had seen some structural damages to the columns and beam of the structure and as a temporary relief, the Nata Mandap was provided scaffolding support. According to historians, there is no authentic information on the year of the Gundicha temple construction but as per folklore, the temple was built by Gundicha Rani, queen of King Indradyumna.


 Sandstone capitals on columns to be replaced with granite capitals for greater stability

 Work to be completed before next Rath Yatra

 18 to 20 iron beams to be replaced with stainless steel beams to prevent rusting

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