LUCKNOW: Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teertha Kshetra Trust on Saturday sent a set of tentative ‘Bhoomi Pujan’ dates to the PMO for the construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya and requested to decide one of the dates on the basis of PM Narendra Modi’s availability.
The decision on the dates, which were not spelt out to the media, was taken at the crucial meeting of the temple trust in Ayodhya on Saturday. However, the key sources claimed that three dates -- July 29, August 3, and August 5 — were sent to the PMO.
Briefing reporters after the meeting, the General Secretary of the trust and senior VHP leader Champat Rai confirmed that the set of dates for the Bhoomi Pujan was sent to PMO. However, he claimed that the final date would be announced eight days ahead of the ceremony.
The meeting of the trust, conducted at Ayodhya circuit house, was attended by all 15 members including trust’s chairperson Mahant Nritya Gopal Das of Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas. While 12 trustees were present in the meeting, three trustees -- Supreme Court lawyer K Parasaran, Shankaracharya Swami Vasudevanand Saraswati of Prayagaraj and Swami Vishwa Prasannathirthaji of Pejawar Math, Udupi -- joined the deliberations through video conferencing.
Sharing the details of the meeting, which continued for two and half hours, Champat Rai said that the engineers of Larsen & Tubero, developer for the proposed temple, were collecting soil samples from the Ram Janmabhoomi premises for testing. “The plan for temple’s foundation will be drawn on the basis of the strength of soil till 60 metre below the ground,” said Rai, adding that the foundation would be laid on the basis of the plan drawn by the engineers.
Champat Rai also said that while L&T would construct the temple, the responsibility of stonework was entrusted to Sompura Marbles and Bricks. Rai gave a brief introduction of Sompuras and the projects to their credit including Somnath and Akshardham temples in Gujarat, a grand temple of Goddess Amba on
Gujarat-Rajasthan border. Rai said that Chandra Kant Sompura and L&T would jointly bring out a grand temple of Lord Ram at his birthplace.
On the change in design in the existing model of the temple, Rai said that discussion was held over the issue keeping popular demand of the seers in mind to add more grandeur to the proposed temple by increasing its height. However, the sources claimed that it was decided to increase the number of domes in the temple from three to five and also its height to 161 ft.
On the expenses for the temple, Champat Rai said that it would depend on the cooperation and donations. However, the trustees had given their approval to a plan to contact 10 crore families based in four lakh localities across the country to seek financial support. “This exercise would be conducted after the monsoon or when the situation normalises in the country,” he maintained.
On the tentative time limit for construction, Champat Rai said with all the required elements including normalcy in the country, funds, drawings and temple plan on board, the construction from the day of commencement would take maximum 3-3.5 years to complete.